“[Brett’s] writing is so vivid, the observations so telling, that a reader can virtually feel the smooth heft of a collected egg in the palm of a hand or hear the goofy, honking dawn call of the peacock.” —Globe & Mail on Trauma Farm
A raucous biography of a remarkable parrot and an incisive exploration of how we relate to those who are different from us.
Both a biography of an irreverent African Grey parrot—given to asking “Whaddya know?” and announcing “Party time!”—and an exploration of the history of birds/ dinosaurs, the relationships between humans and birds, our notions of language and intelligence, and our tendency to “other” anything that is different from us, Tuco also describes Brett’s own painful experience of being othered as an androgyne. Provocative, profound, hilarious, and moving, Tuco is most of all the extraordinary story of Brett’s decades-long relationship with this singular bird, what Brett calls “a story we made together.”
About the author
Brian Brett was born in Vancouver, British Columbia in 1950 and studied literature at Simon Fraser University. He has been associated with several firms as an editor and publisher and has been a reviewer for many publications and newspapers.In the early seventies, he began working as a freelance journalist and critic for various publications and newspapers, including The Globe and Mail, the Toronto Star, the Vancouver Sun, The New Reader, Books in Canada, the Victoria Times-Colonist and theVancouver Province — where he was the poetry critic for two years, and had his own column. His journalism has appeared in almost every major newspaper in Canada, and his essays in most of the major magazines. Brett inaugurated the BC Poetry-in-the-Schools program, introducing children in schools to world poetry for a period of several years, and has taught or given workshops on writing across Canada. He has been a member of organizations ranging from P.E.N. International, the League of Canadian Poets, the Federation of BC Writers, to the Writers' Union of Canada. While a member of the League of Canadian Poets he performed a national reading tour under their auspices. He has also given readings on CBC Radio and various other media as well as public performances funded by private organizations, universities, Harbourfront, Vancouver International Writers Festival, Saltwater Festival, Sechelt Writers’ Festival, Wordfest: Banff Calgary International Writers Festival, the Winnipeg International Writers Festival, National Book Festival, and the Canada Council. Brett is the author of several books of fiction and poetry, including, Tanganyika (Thistledown Press, 1991), The Fungus Garden (Thistledown Press, 1988) Coyote (Thistledown 2003), and Trauma Farm: A Rebel History of Rural Life (2009) for which he won the Writers Trust Non-Fiction Prize. He lives on a farm on Salt Spring Island.