Books by Dave Henderson

SPOOK by Dave Henderson
NON-FICTION
Released: Aug. 1, 1995

A charming paean to the sport of bird hunting by one of the elder statesmen of the wing-shooting press. Approaching 80, Henderson began hunting and writing about it 40 years ago, and his articles still run in magazines like Gun Dot and Pointing Dog Journal. The retired lawyer and former state legislator counters the popular image of beer-swilling, potbellied louts running amok in the field. He and his North Carolina companions are of the old school of southern quail hunters, by his own accounting a ``stubborn, opinionated, backward-looking, anachronistic'' lot (which, of course, is a matter of some pride among them). But first and foremost they are gentlemen, conservators of both nature and the hunting tradition. For these traditionalists, only two breeds of bird dogs (English setters and English pointers) will do and only one birdthe bobwhite quailis worth hunting. Outside of that, the formula is simple, if old- fashioned: ``A recipe for birdhunting requires four ingredients. They are birds, dogs, guns, and guys.'' Henderson plumbs the mystery and aesthetics of the hunting experience with the knowledgeable, poetic eye of a passionate outdoorsman, recounting a lifetime of dogs, hunting buddies, covey rises, missed shots, and other misadventures with a courtly, avuncular affability that gives these loosely organized tales and observations the agreeable tenor of a fireside chat (accompanied by Shep Foley's line drawings). Though mostly a collection of odds and ends, Henderson's remembrances express a fundamental moral code that demands respect for land, people, and animals. Of particular note is the relationship between hunters and their dogsa special bond of love, discipline, and shared adventure that Henderson limns with great affection and honesty as he memorializes Spook and other canine companions. A treasurethe next best thing to a day afield for longtime hunters or newcomers to the sport. Read full book review >
KEEP MS. SUGARMAN IN THE FOURTH GRADE by Elizabeth Levy
CHILDREN'S
Released: Jan. 30, 1992

Levy writes affectionately of the period when fourth-grader Jackie discovers that her energy and imagination are appreciated by a teacher and, as a result, comes to value herself—but this is only the beginning of the story. Previously considered a mildly difficult student (``energetic,'' ``hyperactive,'' problems of ``hand-eye coordination''), Jackie basks in Ms. Sugarman's praise; thus, when her teacher is offered the principal's job, Jackie is the most vocal opponent of change, unwilling to part with her new ally. Jackie may or may not be talented—that's not the point of this miniature character study. Levy's ambitions here are minor, but are realized with commendable ease: readers will admire both Jackie and Ms. Sugarman, and perhaps gain some perspective on their own shortcomings. Illustrations not seen. (Fiction. 8-11) Read full book review >