"A Supremely Bad Idea"

A Supremely Bad Idea by Luke Dempsey

Luke Dempsey, born in England but now a resident of the US, is a book editor in New York City and an avid birder. He was introduced to the sport by his friends Don and Donna Grafitti, with whom he has traveled all over the US in a quest to check as many birds as possible off his "life list".

From the time Donna handed him a set of binoculars, he was hooked. He started spotting birds in his own back yard and spending time in city parks, then the Grafitti's introduced him to the concept of birding trips, traveling with the specific intent of spotting as many bird species as possible  in the time they had. They began traveling together when their various schedules and responsibilities allowed it, taking trips to every corner of the country. He takes us along back roads and into state parks, introducing us to landscapes and local people, showing us the country through his eyes - the eyes of someone in love with nature. Of course the birds themselves are the stars of the show. Dempsey describes them vividly, telling us about colour and shape and markings, giving us enough facts to make it interesting but never making it dull with too much information.

The three traveling birders provide the comic relief. Dempsey is smart and funny with a gift for irony and sarcasm that lifts his writing right off the page. Don is a living collection of quirks and idiosyncrasies who really anchors the story; it wouldn't be the same without him at all. Between his obsessive interest in Luke's dislike of tomatoes, Luke's own minor superhero tendencies and Donna trying to keep everybody on an even keel, they get into some dicey situations but always manage to escape serious consequences and move on.

On the negative side, the authour uses quite a bit of coarse language and there are times when it would be nice if he exercised a little more tolerance in his dealings with other people. In spite of those things I enjoyed the authour's sharp wit and the book overall. I recommend it - with a language warning.


AmandaR said...

Thankful for four seasons. This smell of wet grass makes me feel new.

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