Elsewhere In the Land of Parrots by Jim Paul

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Reclusive David Huntington writes rigorously meaningless poetry to great acclaim. But he lives fearfully, sleeping and working with earplugs, rarely going outside, drawing his life more closely around him every day.
A wild parrot, a gift from his father, becomes the breach in the dike: Little Wittgenstein has a jungle shriek, fierce eyes, and a beak that wreaks havoc. David finally throws the bird out the window--and follows it into the world. His guilty search for the parrot takes him first to Telegraph Hill, where the parrot may have found others of its kind. Inexorably David is drawn even farther, lured to South America by rumors of an ancient flock in the wild mangrove swamps. There he meets the lovely level-headed Fern, an American scientist who has her own reasons for searching for the birds. Will he retreat, or follow the parrots' call?
Jim Paul has created a tender, whimsical romance, told with wit and subtlety, about having the courage to heed the messages the world sends you, and to welcome unexpected love.

About Jim Paul

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Jim Paul, author of Catapult: Harry and I Build a Siege Weapon, What's Called Love, and Medieval in L.A., is a poet and translator. A recipient of a Wallace Stegner Creative Writing Fellowship and a Guggenheim Fellowship, he lives in San Francisco.
Published July 1, 2003 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 320 pages
Genres: Nature & Wildlife, Romance, Literature & Fiction, Science & Math. Fiction

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Meanwhile, Fern, a more fully realized character, has traveled to Ecuador for dissertation research on the habits and evolution of the Aratinga erythrogenys, mangrove swamp parrots known to be “indicators of the state of the earth.” The Aratinga happens to be the same variety fascinating David.

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Publishers Weekly

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Finally, after discovering a flock of feral aratinga erythrogenys, David decides to take a boat to Ecuador to see the birds in their native habitat.

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Entertainment Weekly

What happens when an asocial San Francisco poet tosses his cantankerous parrot out the window and an Arizona ornithologist discovers that she's inadvertently been working for a ring of endangered-wildlife smugglers?

Jun 27 2003 | Read Full Review of Elsewhere In the Land of Parrots

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