I’ve enjoyed reading Jim Howell’s columns on insects in the AJC Home and Garden section for several years. When I heard he was compiling the columns to put into a book, I was excited – and I was glad to write an endorsement which the publisher used on the back cover.
Jim combines his scientific training with his Southern upbringing to write an engaging look at the insects (and a few other bug-like creatures) that surround us. Did you know Daddy Longlegs are not spiders? Or that doodlebugs have wings at one stage of their life? Or that blue mud daubers prey on black widow spiders?
He’s been chewed by chiggers and feasted on by fleas, but Jim brings a sense of enthusiasm to each bug that bites him. Insects, whether good, bad or beautiful, all intrigue him. Further, he celebrates the human-insect interaction, whether chasing cicada killers with a slingshot, delighting in the fierce, but beneficial, wheel bug, or controlling carpenter bees with a broomhandle.
Jim Howell’s “The Bug Doctor is In!” is a useful and fascinating exploration of insects. It gives us new appreciation of the six- and eight-legged creatures that share our Southern heritage.
This book is a great way to learn more about Georgia’s insects – a concise and entertaining read.
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