About the Authors
Carlos was born in Angola in the small town of Lobito. Washed by gentle waves, warmed by South Atlantic sea winds and nourished by books of every type; the scene was only marred by the grating cries of seagulls, who are very ugly birds.
Moving to Montreal in the winter of 1985, he swapped swimsuit for skates and the tropics quickly became a distant memory.
Carlos wrote his first book in Ottawa, in Portuguese, published in Lisbon, the first of a series of four historical fictions in French. This was followed by a most excellent book of poetry, which was scandalously overlooked by critics. Carlos has still not forgiven this oversight.
Harry was born in a cave in deepest Hertfordshire and raised by wild animals. Starved of human contact as a child, he overcompensated by reading voraciously and it soon became clear that he was deeply intelligent but neurotic and unstable.
To take revenge on the critics, and the universe in general, Carlos and Harry formed an unholy alliance with the vulture community, who shared the legend of Princess, Boy, Buster and Mistress.
“A Feather for Pumpkin” is the result.
Both Carlos and Harry work in separate but equally bewildering full-time professions and are desperate to become famous authors. Carlos, so he can return to the tropics and buy a palace and Harry, so he can afford a cave with a view.
Rather confusingly, Carlos lives with the aunt of Harry’s girlfriend. They are unsure if they are actually related and cannot remember how they met.
From the Back Cover
Vultures are scavenging birds of prey that are found on every continent except Australia and Antarctica.
Vultures have no feathers on their heads and it was thought that this was to help keep the head clean when feeding. However, it is actually used in the regulation of body temperature. Vultures cover their baldheads in the cold and stretch their necks to expose them in the heat.
Turkey vultures feed on a variety of carrion, from small to large. They occasionally eat vegetation, pumpkins, coconuts and even small invertebrates. They rarely, if ever, kill prey themselves. Turkey vultures are seen by human roads, enjoying fresh roadkill and near water, feasting on washed-up fish. Vultures play an important role in the ecosystem by disposing of dead bodies, which could otherwise become a breeding ground for disease.
Turkey vulture can also forage by smell, an ability that is uncommon in birds, sometimes flying low to the ground to pick up the scent of decaying flesh. The olfactory lobe of the vulture is particularly large compared to other animals. This heightened ability to detect odours allows it to more effectively search for carrion in the forest. King vultures, black vultures and condors often follow the turkey vultures to dinner.
From the Inside Flap
A flock of vultures is called a volt. The home roost for a volt of vultures is called the venue. When the volt is foraging for food or flying in a group, they are called a kettle. A group of vultures resting in a tree is called a committee and this is also used more formally when they are discussing matters of importance. The correct term for a group of vultures that are feeding…is a wake.