Review: Bird by Matt Shaw

Book Description:

Bird centers around a dysfunctional husband and wife and tells the story of their relationship problems. Constantly trying to get one up on the other, the wife decides that they’re going to get their own turkey for Christmas this year and fatten it up themselves, feeding it only the best of foods. Not only is it more work for her stay at home husband, but it is also a form of punishment as the bird-fancier will be the one who has to kill the turkey when the time comes. He kills it, the wife cooks it – that’s what she plans.
Soon the bird becomes a key character in helping the man decide what he wants from his life. Spending more and more time with the turkey, the only person who’ll listen to his problems, talking things through – will he realise his marriage is over or will find a way to rekindle their love for one another? Only time will tell.

WARNING: Some scenes ARE offensive and the language is strong. If you are easily offended, or do not like bad language – please do not purchase this title.

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I thought I knew what to expect from Matt Shaw, but once again, he shocked me. Bird is an odd little story about an unhappy couple and the problems in their marriage. The wife is constantly nagging the husband and he is always trying to keep the peace. One day, she tells him she wants him to go out and buy a live turkey so they can fatten it up, kill it, and eat it for Christmas dinner. Reluctantly, he agrees.

The husband picks up the turkey, brings it home, and looking for some kind of peace in his life, begins talking to it. The family names the turkey Tina and the husband tells Tina everything he can’t say to his wife.

One night, the husband starts drinking and Tina begins talking back to him. Things quickly go downhill from there and, um…well…let’s just say their relationship takes an unexpected turn.

Bird is filled with sadness, humor, and shocking scenes. You tell yourself, “No, even Shaw wouldn’t go there” and yet he does. By the end of the book, you’re asking yourself, “WTF?” Bird is certainly one of Shaw’s most controversial novels, but as disturbing as it was, this book is, as always, a lot of fun to read. Bird is a quick read, and if you’re in the mood for something different, this one may be just what you’re looking for.

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