Wednesday, 12 January 2022

Tickling the Bear: How to Stay Safe in the Universe by David Wann + Giveaway


Join Us for this Tour from January 4 to January 17, 2022
Book Details:

Book Title:  Tickling the Bear: How to Stay Safe in the Universe by David Wann
Category:  Adult Fiction 18+, 279 pages
Genre:  Literary Fiction 
Publisher:  Chokecherry Press, Golden, Colorado 
Release date:   May 2021
Content Rating:  PG13 + M: There's no offensive material but there is a tasteful, semi-comic sex scene and scene in which characters experience MDMA, a mild hallucinogenic. ​ 
Book Description:
Anthropology professor Marc Blake is on a “hero’s journey.” His challenge is to overcome a troubling medical diagnosis –a virus from a tick bite. Along the way he shares his deepest thoughts as the reader follows his courageous efforts to survive. May, an attractive Danish woman, also endures setbacks with resilience, gradually coming center stage in the story. Her husband Kai has a passion for growing herbs and healthy vegetables, marveling how gardening provides a sense of purpose, good health, direct contact with nature, and companionship. Marc’s niece, a natural beauty and ex-model, offers readers a comical, on-again, off-again romantic episode with a Silicon Valley genius she fears might outshine her. Will she prove to be his equal?

Quirky humor injects both lightness and conflict into a 30-year marriage. A six-year old’s “best summer ever” is a reminder that life’s an absolute miracle. Collectively this extended family contests a widespread belief that life is happening to us - that we are passive consumers. On the contrary, each character in this upbeat book is actively self-guided, perfecting their passions and offering generous support to family and friends.

​Though author David Wann has previously written non-fiction books about sensible, sustainable lifestyles, in his first-novel these themes are woven right into a compelling story. “Our lives don’t look much different than most Americans,” the characters might say. “Really, we are not ‘doing without,’ more like doing within.” Kai enjoys investing in regional businesses, and also loves to travel effortlessly on Denver’s bike paths. Meatless Mondays or grilled-salmon Sundays are a great way for the outgoing May to bring friends together for active conversation. Each character would insist that kindness and gratitude are encoded in our genes and are far more powerful than anger. In a world that’s currently so full of disruption and confusion, they offer both a sense of direction and grounded hope.

My Review

I mostly chose to read a review copy of Tickling The Bear: How To Stay Safe In The Universe because of its intriguing title. The two concepts of tickling a bear and staying safe seemed so completely opposed that I wondered how David Wann would manage to combine them. As it turned out, this novel is a thoughtful, even philosophical, work which dedicates a significant proportion of its pages to discussing how our modern day communities can find our way back to healthy and mindful living. I think this is what Wann alludes to by staying safe. I loved the ideas around the natural homestead farm where Rocket and Ellen live and also Kai and May's urban gardening idyll which incorporates historic herbalism practices that are now widely forgotten in the West.

Wann's meandering narrative is gently driven by Marc's discovery of his own mortality through a terminal illness diagnosis which, understandably, focuses his thoughts. As readers we are encouraged, alongside Marc, to consider how we would spend our last year of life if we knew ahead of time that we only had such a short time remaining. What would be most important to us? In a way I saw parallels between Marc's predicament and the emotional discoveries many of us have made during the past two pandemic years. People are turning away from consumer-led, aspirational lifestyles towards a recognition of the health-giving properties of close relationships, slow living and natural foods. As such I felt that Tickling The Bear is a timely novel with a strong message that I hope resonates as much with other readers as it did with me.

Meet the Author:

David Wann has been a self-acknowledged author since second grade. He's written hundreds of articles and columns; ten books - one a best seller; and produced five TV documentaries viewed by 20 million. He's lived in a cooperative neighborhood (cohousing) for 26 years where he has been the organic gardener for 27 households. He's an amateur musician and the proud father of two. His greatest ambition is to make a difference in a world that urgently requires "all hands on deck." His books include Affluenza; Biologic; Superbia; Simple Prosperity; The Zen of Gardening; The New Normal, Reinventing Community and others.

connect with the author: website ~ twitter ~ facebook ~ instagram ~ goodreads
Tour Schedule:

Jan 4 – Cover Lover Book Review – book review / giveaway
Jan 5 – @twilight_reader – book review / giveaway
Jan 6 – Rockin' Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway
Jan 7 – Literary Flits – book review / giveaway
Jan 10 – Kam's Place – book review / author interview
Jan 11 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book review / author interview / giveaway
Jan 12 –Stephanie Jane – book review / giveaway
Jan 12 - Books for Books - book review 
Jan 13 – Book Corner News and Reviews – book review / giveaway
Jan 13 - Sefina Hawke's Books - book review 
Jan 14 – Splashes of Joy – book review / author interview / giveaway
Jan 17 - Books are a Blessing  - book review / guest post / giveaway
Jan 17 - Pick a Good Book – book review / author interview / giveaway

Enter the Giveaway:
Win a $50 Amazon gift card. Open internationally (to users of the website) until the 24th January.



  1. Tickling the Bear sounds like an intriguing read and I like the cover! Thanks for sharing it with me and have a fantastic weekend!