July RandomCAT: All about birds
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This month I’m looking for books that have some connection with birds - however loose it may be:
- bird on the cover
- bird in the title
- a bird plays a part in the story
- something birdy in the title - like wings or feathers
- a major part is about an activity typical for birds: flying, leaving the nest, laying eggs ...
Do tell us about that bird connection!
Excellent challenge! I'll have to root around my tbr and see what I find.
I'm going to read No Man's Nightingale, which I think is the last Inspector Wexford,
I have two nonfiction books related to birds and will probably choose one of them.
I have a book that will meet this Challenge and another one, North on the Wing: Travels With the Songbird Migration of Spring by Bruce M. Beehler. I have planned to read this before and this time I'm determined to get to it!
This might be a good time to read Cargo of Eagles by Margery Allingham. It's been sitting on my shelves for a while.
>14 Robertgreaves: Penguins! Now that's a bright idea!
ETA: Brilliant. I meant to say brilliant.
I have several possibilities for this theme. My RL book group has a tree theme and I am going to read Wilding: The return of nature to a British farm by Isabella Tree for that; it has a bird on its (beautiful) cover.
I also have a couple of fiction books I might try - Tiny Sunbirds Far Away by Christie Watson, or A Thousand Paper Birds by Tor Udall.
And, not that I need to buy any more books ever, let's face it, but I've wanted Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life for ages, so this may be the excuse I need to indulge!
Just thought of another one on the TBR - The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd. Though as I've now just ordered the Anne Lamott book (see previous post) I might run out of time before I get to that one.
Ooh, I also have Mary Stewart's The Stormy Petrel, which might be fun. I'm definitely spoiled for choice this month!
Excellent! I was already going to read Hollow City for SeriesCAT and it will work here as well with Miss Peregrine being a bird.
Love birds and they are pretty common occurrence in literature. Hope I can get some time to do some reading. Summer has been so busy.
>12 VivienneR: read both of these and like both series, the Shetland series better than Vera
What a nice variety of books. I had not thought of it, but any penguin book would fit the bill - lol.
I have a bunch of books that will fit this delightful random category!
Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
A Catalogue of Birds by Laura Harrington
The Cry of the Owl by Patricia Highsmith
The River: Poems by Jane Clarke (lovely heron on the cover)
Mink River by Brian Doyle (crow on the cover)
Parrot and Olivier in America by Peter Carey
Ten White Geese by Gerbrand Bakker
The Wizard of Crow by Ngugi wa Thiong'o
How will I choose? :-D
Not read for this challenge as I finished it a couple of weeks ago, but if anyone wants a short read then Max Porter's Grief is the Thing with Feathers would fit the challenge this month.
That's a fun challenge. I think I will read Transcription by Kate Atkinson which has a flamingo on the cover. No idea if it is at all relevant to the contents...
When I saw it on display at a bookstore this evening, I realized that I have on my tbr shelf The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See. I think I will read this book. It will also fit the TBRCAT.
One of the YA summer free audio books from SYNC in June was Wild Bird by Wendelin van Draanen, so I’ll listen to it.
I'm planning to read Mouthful of Birds by Samanta Schweblin. I'll also be able to tick the short stories box in the Bingo DOG with this one.
I think H Is For Hawk by Helen Macdonald will be my choice. Not that I have been keeping up with the other months, but we live in hope that I will catch up one day!
In all of the wonderful novels written by Patrick O'Brian about the Royal Navy during the Napoleonic Wars, one of the two principal characters, Stephen Maturin, is frequently frustrated by his inability to stop the ship and go bird-watching. Nevertheless, he gets to observe literally dozens of species, all over the world. I believe every single novel (there are twenty, I think) has his comments on this or that species of bird. He is a naturalist, and his observations are informed by a deep knowledge of anatomy and bird behavior.
You will profit enormously by reading these novels. Read them in order: the first one is Master and Commander. (There is a movie of the same title, based on some of O'Brian's novels, but as is usually the case, it doesn't bear comparison to the written works.)
>36 JayneCM: I've heard a couple of really fascinating interviews with her about that book, and it's now on my wishlist (along with about 20 million other books, sigh).
>36 JayneCM: It did nothing for me, so I'd be interested to know how you find it.
Both of my choices are checked out at the library so may not be available this month. However, I found A Murder of Magpies by Judith Flanders on the shelf at home.
I've a flock that match this challenge!
From Hawks to Hummingbirds : Close Encounters With Birds of the North Carolina Coastal Plain by Paris Trail
Birds of the Carolinas by Eloise Potter
Familiar Birds of North America: Eastern Region by Ann H Whitman
Birds (Little Guides by Joseph Michael Forshaw
Red-Tails in Love: A Wildlife Drama in Central Park by Marie Winn
And for fiction:
Black Wings: The Unbeatable Crow by Joseph Wharton Lippincott
Old Bill, the Whooping Crane by Joseph Wharton Lippincott
Feather in the Wind by Beverly Butler
A book I quite liked and would recommend if you like slightly weird books set in Quebec: Black Bird, by Michel Basilières.
To my surprise (which is embarrassing since there is a birdcage on the cover) a certain bird species is central to the mystery in Fever Dream.
I have completed my read of Lost And Found by Carolyn Parkhurst. The cover of this book is very bright, colorful and has parrots!
I finished Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird today, and gave it 4 stars. I think I'll be dipping in and out of it often in the future.
I've decided to read The Stormy Petrel by Mary Stewart; a petrel is apparently a type of sea bird.
I've just finished And No Birds Sang, by Farley Mowat. It is the author's memoir of his experience in the infantry during World War II. I read the last few pages with tears in my eyes.
Had it not been for the theme, I don't think I would have picked up this book. So thank you, Sushicat, for making me read it.
The birds are not just in the title, they make a few appearances in the book. The author was a keen bird-watcher. One of his first encounters with the war happened when he was watching birds (while hitching a ride on a tank): "Standing in the unroofed gunner's compartment of the lead carrier, I had been bird-watching when the battle started, my binoculars focussed on a pair of red-tailed kites soaring on the updrafts from the escarpment. As I tried to hold the big birds in the shaky circle of my glasses, they went into a sudden dive, sliding swiftly out of sight. I heard a distant snarling bark, a whining scream, and then a stunning crash as a shell aburst a few yards away from the carrier."
My birdy selection:
Feathers by Jacqueline Woodson
When a new boy starts at Frannie's school, everyone takes notice, because he's the only white boy there. Some think he doesn't belong in this school or in this part of town at all. Frannie isn't sure what to think of him, but she knows what it's like to be the new kid, and since her brother is deaf, she also experience how kids treat Different every day. So, Frannie juggles life at school negotiating a new friendship with the Jesus Boy (the nickname by general consensus for the new kid), dealing with the angry bully, and sorting through her best friend's religious near-fanaticism. She's not without worries at home, either: although part of a loving and generally happy family, she's troubled that her mother is again pregnant when previous pregnancies have failed and left her (mother) depressed and weak. But Frannie's teacher has had them read some Dickinson, and Frannie uses everything going on around her to try to suss out the meaning of how hope can be a thing with feathers.
Short but powerful, this story packs a ton into its just over 100 pages. Still, somehow it doesn't feel as if it's overdoing anything, and all the elements are blended well. A good story, with characters who are comfortably genuine. Definitely recommended for kiddos and adults alike.
I have finished L'épervier which means sparrowhawk, a graphic novel about seafaring adventures and a treasure hunt in 18th century France.
Took me a while to figure out what I want to read, but have landed on The Birds Fall Down by Rebecca West, a Virago Modern Classic which is also a 1001 book.
Finished Hollow City which featured a couple of birds, Miss Peregrine and a pigeon played a rather important role.
Finished Thrice the Brindled Cat Hath Mew'd which, surprisingly includes birds. Birds who are accused of murder!
I finished Fünf, a crime fiction first-in-a-series by Ursula Poznanski. I must admit that the crow on the cover is not very big, but anyway... And the book features an owl named Elvira (a stuffed animal for children), so I guess that makes it okay. ;)
It was a very good start into a new series, and the second book is called Blinde Vögel ("blind birds"), so there's another connection!
I have read The Winter of the Birds by Helen Cresswell. It contains some (imaginary?) birds that are evil and made of steel and run on wires at night, and also some definitely real birds, such as sparrows, gulls, pigeons, and doves. It's quite good overall, but I could not get past the sexism of the main character, Edward, who is a boy obsessed with heroes. He thinks there is no such thing as a female hero,* but this opinion of his is never overtly challenged in the book, and also there are very few female characters in general. Although, the boy seems to be evolving on some of his other silly ideas about heroes by the end, so maybe one day...
*I have also just been reading Not One Damsel in Distress which is a book of stories about female heroes; if Edward had had a book like it, perhaps he would not have this wrong idea.
I finished Isabella Tree's Wilding: The Return of nature to a British farm which has a turtle dove (one of the stars of the rewilding project) on the cover. It was absolutely wonderful, a 5* read.
(edited to add: actually it might be a nightingale on the cover. Sorry I'm not a twitcher so I'm not sure which one it is!)
Owls in the Family / Farley Mowat
Billy has a collection of animals as pets, including gophers, snakes, rats… He and a couple of friends decide they want an owl, so go looking to steal one from a nest, but instead find an injured baby owl and bring him home. They later come across a second injured one, and bring him home for company for Wol, the first owl. The two owls are very different in personality, but they both seem to not realize they are owls who can fly and do other things owls can do.
This was so short; I wish it had been longer. I felt terrible when I thought Billy was going to bring home an owl by stealing it out of a nest! There were plenty of humourous stories about Wol and Weeps. I am curious if Mowat actually had owls as pets.
I read Murder at the House of Rooster Happiness by David Casarett, a light mystery set in northern Thailand, with an interesting setting and enjoyable characters. Thanks to sushicat for giving us a prompt that caused me to read this book!
I finished Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott a couple of weeks ago, forgot to record it here! I LOVED it!!!
>68 EBT1002: I read that one too for this challenge, it was good, wasn't it?
I just finished another fun book that has a connection to birds with A Guide to the Birds of East Africa by Nicholas Drayson - not a nature book, but a charming love story.
I am reading Wild Bird by Wendelin Van Draanen. It is a free AudioSync YA book. I am liking it.
On Wings of Cheer by Sam Campbell is a great book. It's timeless, and part of a series written by a man who gave lyceum events at schools in the 1960s, maybe 1950s as well. He and his wife lived part-time in an animal sanctuary on an island in Minneota or Wisconsin. The rest of the year they traveled to schools showing films of the animals and their antics. The animals were rescues that were given freedom as soon as they were able to survive in the wild. I believe this was the first book in the series I was given.
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