Monday, 2 September 2013

Narrowdog to Indian River by Terry Darlington

Narrowdog to Indian River
Terry's Narrowdog books (there are three) seem to provoke the Marmite response in readers: you either love them with a passion or you hate them - there seems to be no middle ground. I love them - even though personally, I have absolutely no interest whatsoever in boats, and generally detest travelogs, which is basically what they are all about. Despite this, I was unable to resist succumbing to the considerable charms of this book which, after braving a channel crossing and the French in the previous book (Narrowdog to Carcassonne) this time details the journey which pensioners Terry and Monica make in the States in their narrowboat, the Phyllis May. It is hugely entertaining, weirdly informative, often very funny and very much a page-turner.
Jim the whippet is, as always, a reluctant passenger accompanying Terry and Monica as they face any number of perils, and shows just what an accomplished thief he is by succeeding in stealing every single scene he appears in. But a love of whippets isn't necessary to enjoy this book, any more than an interest in boating, canals or Americans - it's just a wonderful, slightly offbeat read!