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A Guide to the Birds of East Africa by…
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A Guide to the Birds of East Africa (2008)

by Nicholas Drayson, Nicholas Drayson

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4505223,201 (3.92)159
  1. 10
    The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith (bookwoman247)
    bookwoman247: Both books have a similar, lighthearted tone, and of course, they have the African setting in common.
  2. 00
    The Conjuror's Bird by Martin Davies (bergs47)
  3. 00
    The Snake Catcher's Daughter by Michael Pearce (keeley)
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» See also 159 mentions

English (48)  German (2)  Norwegian (1)  French (1)  All languages (52)
Showing 1-5 of 48 (next | show all)
I had pretty low expectations but this was a very pleasing and entertaining read. Short, quick, and interesting. I would take this book with a grain of salt but the international characters and setting (Nairobi) made the book interesting, and the birds were a nice touch. Always reassuring to read a newer book that is about a relatively simple subject. I really appreciated that this book was not over-the-top or dramatic. ( )
  GraceZ | Sep 6, 2014 |
Identified a Love Bird within an amusing, adventuresome, informative love story ( )
  sar96 | Jan 2, 2014 |
Identified a Love Bird within an amusing, adventuresome, informative love story ( )
  sar96 | Jan 2, 2014 |
Questo gradevolissimo romanzo racconta con tocco lieve una serie di storie d'amore concentriche, per così dire.
Il pretesto è la narrazione di un triangolo amoroso tra la vedova Rose Mbikwa, il vedovo Mr. Malik e il donnaiolo Harry Khan. In fondo, però, è l'amore per il Kenya che emerge con forza, l'amore per le persone e l'amore per la sua fauna, in particolare gli uccelli.
Una scommessa, tra gentiluomini, fra Malik e Khan per stabilire chi dei due possa invitare Rose al ballo del Nairobi Hunt Club, prevede che il vincitore sia chi dei due uomini, appassionati di bird watching, veda in sette giorni il maggior numero di specie diverse di uccelli.
Seguendo i due ci si imbatte nella bellezza del Kenya, nella generosità delle persone che lo abitano, ma ci si insinua anche tra le pieghe della violenta realtà politica del dopo indipendenza.
Il romanzo è scritto molto bene e tradotto altrettanto.
Ricco di un umorismo non esibito, dipinge dei bei personaggi e mostra, in tutta la loro gamma, i colori di splendidi uccelli e di rari esemplari di esseri umani. ( )
  Kazegafukuhi | Aug 10, 2013 |
recommended by: Lee Aiken

I love the little pen & ink drawings of birds, with their names shown, that are at the start of every chapter. The chapters are extremely short, and this should have been an incredibly quick read, but for some reason it took me some time to slog through, even though I enjoyed it, and as the story went on, it grew on me more and more, though I wasn’t perturbed when I had to put it down.

It’s a gentle and slow little story, and I could have done without the fact that the ball in question is at the hunt club; it starts off quiet and simple and innocent but quietly yet surely gets slightly more complicated, though it never loses its gentleness. There definitely ended up being some layers, some darkness in what seemed to be at first a simple lighthearted story, but overall it remained sweet.

I’m not sure about this narrator. Those who have read the book: Who is the narrator? Whoever narrates the book, the voice is personable and easy to read.

I loved the locales and got a kick out of where and why and how some of the birds were found. I really enjoyed how the storyline and characters evolved.

I reveled in the wickedly funny little asides, and the witticisms are not at all limited to observations about birds and birdwatchers, not at all! I wanted to add some quotes but there are just too many and I couldn’t decide which ones to include.

Great ending!

In a way, I could rate this 5 stars or 3, so I’ll settle for 4, 4 ½ actually. ( )
2 vote Lisa2013 | Apr 17, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 48 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (6 possible)

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Nicholas Draysonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Drayson, Nicholasmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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'Ah yes,' said Rose Mbikwa, looking up at the large dark bird with elegant tail soaring high above the car park of the Nairobi Museum, 'a black kite. Which is of course, not black but brown.'
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Haiku summary
counting Kenyan birds 
hopes to beat flashy Khan and
waltz with lovely Rose                           [yalliejane]

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0547152582, Hardcover)

A beguiling novel that does for contemporary Kenya and its 1,000 species of birds what Alexander McCall Smith’s Ladies Detective series does for Botswana

For the past three years, the widower Mr. Malik has been secretly in love with Rose Mbikwa, a woman who leads the weekly bird walks sponsored by the East African Ornithological Society. Reserved and honorable, Malik wouldn't be noticed by a bystander in a Nairobi street—except perhaps to comment on his carefully sculpted combover. But beneath that unprepossessing exterior lies a warm heart and a secret passion.

But just as Malik is getting up the nerve to invite Rose to the Nairobi Hunt Club Ball (the premier social occasion of the Kenyan calendar), who should pop up but his nemesis from his school days. The jokester Harry Khan, good-looking in a flashy way and quick of foot, has also become enraptured with the object of Malik’s affection.
So begins the competition cooked up by fellow members of the Asadi club: whoever can identify the most species of birds in one week’s time gets the privilege of asking Ms. Mbikwa to the ball.
Set against the lush Kenyan landscape rich with wildlife and political intrigue, this irresistible novel has been sold in eight countries and is winning fans worldwide.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:28:24 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Working up the nerve to invite Rose Mbikwa, the woman he has secretly loved for three years, to the Nairobi Hunt Club Ball, Mr. Malik, a reserved, honorable widower, is suddenly confronted by the return of his school nemesis, the flashy Harry Kahn, who also sets his sights on Rose, and embarks on a bird identification competition for the prize of Rose's company at the ball.… (more)

» see all 3 descriptions

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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