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In the Spotlight Among PigeonsAmong Pigeons
A Review

by lyle e davis

We have an outstanding novelist living here in North San Diego County. He is Lawrence A. Wood, MD.

His novel, “Among Pigeons,” is an excellent read.

As a young man, Larry Wood, walked the city streets, the mean streets. He was a tough guy. He knew the gutter language of the street and was ‘one of the boys.’ Those boys used to cruelly torment “John-the-Bum.” No one knew who he was . . . he was probably just some homeless guy . . . a white guy in a black neighborhood who suffered and endured the taunts. Then, one spring, “John-the-Bum.” didn’t show up . . . and they never saw him again.

Later in life, Larry Wood found religion . . . and in his reflections on life, his, as well as those he impacted, he began to remember those days . . . and felt ashamed at how he and his pals had treated a fellow human being.

Larry Wood would mature. He would lose the gutter language of the streets, and become a rather distinguished young man. He would enter medical school and graduate, then continue his medical training and became an ophthalmologist. He entered the Navy and met a beautiful nurse, Vanessa, whom he married. He had a brilliant Naval and medical career, attaining the rank of Captain, before retiring.

But always, in the back of his mind, was “John-the-Bum.” Finally, Lawrence Wood, MD, decided he just had to tell the story of “John-the-Bum.”

His central character in the novel, Roman Barnes, is also white, is also homeless, and bears a remarkable resemblance to our friend, “John-the-Bum.”

It is through Roman Barnes that Dr. Wood tells his story. In his story . . . Roman Barnes allows us to experience the life of a homeless person, vicariously. We can read about him scrounging for food in dumpsters and sleeping on the cold, cold ground, and dealing with perverts and thieves and managing to stay alive, but we never have to leave the comfort of our warm and comfortable living room easy chair. We can follow Roman Barnes in his journey from rags to revelations.

We can develop a better understanding of the lifestyle of someone in these circumstances, and how even you or I could, given the wrong set of circumstances, be out on the streets, living a similar life, among the pigeons in the parks . . . and thus the title.

You can purchase a copy of Among Pigeons today at:

Dr. Wood is also available for speaking engagements. Contact him via:

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