I'm reading a novel about elephants.
I'm about 2/3rds through this magnificent book by Barbara Gowdy, called The White Bone.
In all seriousness, all the characters are elephants.
Well, there are humans, yes -- but it's the elephants that have the real talking roles! The humans just make an appearance as slaughterers. Bringers of mayhem and brutal destruction.
If you don't know how to speak Elephant… worry not. Mostly these elephants are talking normal English, and there is a glossary at the front of the book to help with particular elephant vernacularisms.
I will hold off on a review of the book until I am actually finished the thing -- at this point though I must say, it's an engrossing read! Who would have trunk... I mean thunk that elephants have such an intricate social system. Such culture and mythology.
A neat thing happened, as I was reading today in a Starbucks.
Of course, several other people were reading stuff, newspapers, books, things like that. Most people were just talking, etc. However, one elderly lady left the store and as she passed by the plate glass window, I looked up from my reading to see in her hand the very book in front of me. The cover of her book was the same as the image shown above, and I saw it clearly.
I am not exactly a BESTSELLER reader. In fact, most of the selections decided upon in my Elite Little Book Club are rather obscure. Not deliberately so, but this is just as it happens -- the importance always being relevance, not sales.
To my knowledge The White Bone, published twelve years ago, is not exactly some sort of present-day chartbuster.
Yet here was a woman, walking past my window, with whom I sensed an immediate affinity -- because, whoever she is, she also knows Mud, and She-Snorts, and Tall Time, and Torrent. She is marvelling at the survival capabilities of young Date Bed. She is now far from my window… but perhaps still in mourning over what took place at Blood Swamp, as I am.