Where the Deer and the Antelope Play: The Pastoral Observations of One Ignorant American Who Loves To Walk Outside

Dutton. Oct. 2021. 336p. ISBN 9781101984697. $28. MEMOIR
Offerman (The Greatest Love Story Ever Told) shares observations from the road with wry humor and sarcasm and an understanding of the privilege that allowed the Parks and Recreation actor to make these journeys. A trip to Glacier National Park with George Saunders and Jeff Tweedy is an opportunity to contemplate others’ antics and examine ecology and history, including how the park came to be through violence and illegal land grabs from the Blackfoot Confederacy and Salish and Kootenai tribes. In later chapters, Offerman tags along as British farmer/writer James Rebanks rebuilds walls, negotiates livestock purchases, and discusses living on and respecting the land. In the final section, which takes place during the pandemic and loses some of the book’s insight and relatability, Offerman and spouse Megan Mullally indulge in the consumerism they previously disparaged and purchase an Airstream to travel during the U.S. COVID-19 lockdowns in spring 2020. Offerman’s narrative thread is peppered with tangential discussions that are almost always entertaining and informative, aside from somewhat overdone references to Aldo Leopold and Wendell Barry.
VERDICT A great mix of wit and perceptive observation from travels in the United States and the United Kingdom just before and during the COVID-19 pandemic, with a surprising amount of history, nature, and ecology thrown in.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing