Tuesday, May 26, 2009

David Earl's ABCs (Adventures, Beer, and Characters) by Mike Windham

I know Mike Windham only to say hi to. We wave to each other occasionally at events around town. His wife taught my son in school. But, now that I’ve read his new book, I feel like we’ve been good friends since birth and that we share best bud David Earl Faulkner.

David Earl is a good ole boy. He made it through Ole Miss “on the 6 year plan.” He loves his family and is married to the sweetest woman in town. He has a big heart and always means well. But the only thing David Earl loves more than drinking another beer or two is stirring up a little excitement.

David Earl’s adventures often involve a combination the best of intentions, some dangerous equipment and a little too much beer. It doesn’t seem to occur to David Earl that his hare-brained schemes will result in the disaster that always seems to follow him around. Of course, not all of David Earl’s adventures end in explosions or gunshot wounds. Sometimes he just outsmarts (or gets outsmarted by) some dumb Yankee or other simple-minded fool. One of my favorite stories is when the female MSU graduate student from Michigan explains to David Earl how to find the front of a tree.

These tales “from south of here” are wonderful little vignettes of life in the South. Mike Windham writes exactly as he talks, giving the stories an honest, natural flow. Perhaps even better than hearing the stories at the hunting camp, reading them here captures the nuances of David Earl and his buddies that might get lost in the gunpowder and beer. Mike Windham has done a great job capturing a true Southern character.

Windham will sign copies of David Earl’s ABCs at the Lincoln County Public Library Friday June 5 from noon until 4 p.m. Stop by and hear a true Southern voice.

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