Friday, March 1, 2013

Tim Rowland's Creature Features (Review and Giveaway!)

Tim Rowland’s Creature Features by Tim Rowland
ISBN: 978-0976159735
High Peaks Publishing
Published: November 2012
Trade Paperback, 160 pages

I enjoyed reading this laugh-out-loud series of essays about the exploits and “personalities” of a large menagerie of animals sharing a farm (or farmette) as the author calls it, with him and his wife. 

What animal lover could resist the cows, Cleopatra and Heifertiti, a horse named Cappucino aka Cappy, a blond (?) bulldog called Hannah, a mini horse known as Doodlebug, or the ever-present and lovable bouvier des Flandres dog, Opie? And there are a multitude (or so it seemed to me) of other animals to meet and laugh about. And there are plenty of political comments (mostly American) thrown in for good measure.

The title of each essay is original and funny, i.e. Pants on the Trees Keep Water in the Trough (hilarious story), British Invasion Brings Changes in Pig Culture, Birds of a Feather Get Stuck in Stovetop Vent Together. In the essay entitled Essence of Bovinity Something to Chew On the author reveals that the decoding of the genome of the common cow took 6 years, cost $53 million and involved 200 scientists from 25 countries. So basically, decoding a cow genome is as involved as developing the software for Photoshop, says the author… I wasn’t sure whether I should laugh at that or not.

Here is an excerpt from the chapter on unusual dog breeds: “Labradoodle. Just stop it, OK? I don’t want to hear of any of these designer breeds cooked up just because they result in a clever name. I don’t want to hear about any Pomertriever or Bassetweiler or Cockerpincher or any other compound hound. It just smacks of elitism….” 

The chapter on Hattie the chicken ends this way: “The self-help chicken books are full of advice and cures concerning physical ailments, but they are silent on the matter of moral imperfections. So I am left with little recourse, other than to erect a rather embarrassing sign at the end of the drive: Beware of the Chicken.” For the whole story, read the book.

This is a quick read when you need a picker-upper and/or makes a delightful gift for a friend who revels in animal tales.

Note: This book is rated C = clean read.

About the author:
Tim Rowland is an award-winning columnist at Herald-Mail Media in Hagerstown, Maryland. He has written for numerous history and outdoor magazines and news syndicates nationwide.

He has also authored several books, most recently Strange and Obscure Stories of the Civil War and including All Pets are Off: A Collection of Hairy Columns, Petrified Fact: Stories of Bizarre Behavior that Really Happened, Mostly, Earth to Hagerstown, High Peaks: A History of Hiking the Adirondacks from Noah to Neoprene and Maryland's Appalachian Highlands: Massacres, Moonshine & Mountaineering.

Tim is also keeper and lackey for a wide assortment of mostly non-useful, freeloading critters, aided as always by his trusty (well, mostly trusty) companion Opie.
Tim Rowland's Website:

Reviewed by Sandra

Disclosure: Thanks to Tim Rowland and Virtual Author Book Tours for sending me this e-book for review. I was not compensated in any other way, nor told how to rate or review this product.

Giveaway now closed.

The author has graciously offered an ebook edition of Creature Features to one of our readers.


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