cover image Real Ponies Don't Go Oink!

Real Ponies Don't Go Oink!

Patrick F. McManus. Henry Holt & Co Inc, $16.95 (198pp) ISBN 978-0-8050-1651-2

McManus ( The Night the Bear Ate Goombaw ) is the author of a monthly humor column for Outdoor Life ; this volume collects some of those pieces. At his best, McManus is a brilliant humorist, particularly in describing human reactions to the unexpected. Memorable essays include ``A Good Deed Goes Wrong,'' about an old woodsman's misadventure at ok? a toboggan run built by two boys, and a subsequent encounter with a bobcat; ``The Clown,'' in which a terrifying math teacher given to grabbing pupils by their hair confronts a miscreant who has doctored his tresses with bear grease; and ``A Good Night's Sleep,'' which concerns three outdoorsmen who wreak havoc on a hotel and its patrons. Certain pieces will appeal only to hunters and anglers, but other entries are so notable that the book deserves a wide audience. (June)