A nature book recommendation: Linescapes: Remapping and Reconnecting Britain’s Fragmented Wildlife by Hugh Warwick

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2CEYs7w.
Warwick is a generous companion and never a prickly know-it-all, even as he presents his manifesto for reconnection.
Book description from Google Books:
Selected as a Book of the Year 2017 in the Guardian ‘This is a beautifully crafted book . . . timely and essential reading’ Kathy Willis, Director of Science, Kew Gardens It is rare to find a landscape untouched by our lines – the hedges, walls, ditches and dykes built to enclose and separate; and the green lanes, roads, canals, railways and power lines, designed to connect. This vast network of lines has transformed our landscape. In Linescapes, Hugh Warwick unravels the far-reaching ecological consequences of the lines we have drawn: as our lives and our land were being fenced in and threaded together, so wildlife habitats have been cut into ever smaller, and increasingly unviable, fragments. Hugh Warwick has travelled across the country to explore this linescape from the perspective of our wildlife and to understand how, with a manifesto for reconnection, we can help our flora and fauna to flourish. Linescapes offers a fresh and bracing perspective on Britain’s countryside, one that proposes a challenge and gives ground for hope; for while nature does not tend to straight lines and discrete borders, our lines can and do contain a real potential for wildness and for wildlife.
The book is rated 4.40/5 at goodreads.com, from 5 ratings. See 2 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2CcyNlL.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2Cdd6BY.

A nature book recommendation: Autumn by Karl Ove Knausgaard

A critic review (source NY Times) can be read at: http://nyti.ms/2C8Y3Jv.
…in “Autumn,” Knausgaard keeps us on the shore. The shells he gives us to admire are intricate, absorbing and beautiful; this book is full of wonders. But it isn’t, just yet, the whole story.
Book description from Google Books:
The New York Times bestseller. “This book is full of wonders…Loose teeth, chewing gum, it all becomes noble, almost holy, under Knausgaard’s patient, admiring gaze. The world feels repainted.” –The New York Times From the author of the monumental My Struggle series, Karl Ove Knausgaard, one of the masters of contemporary literature and a genius of observation and introspection, comes the first in a new autobiographical quartet based on the four seasons. 28 August. Now, as I write this, you know nothing about anything, about what awaits you, the kind of world you will be born into. And I know nothing about you… I want to show you our world as it is now: the door, the floor, the water tap and the sink, the garden chair close to the wall beneath the kitchen window, the sun, the water, the trees. You will come to see it in your own way, you will experience things for yourself and live a life of your own, so of course it is primarily for my own sake that I am doing this: showing you the world, little one, makes my life worth living. Autumn begins with a letter Karl Ove Knausgaard writes to his unborn daughter, showing her what to expect of the world. He writes one short piece per day, describing the material and natural world with the precision and mesmerising intensity that have become his trademark. He describes with acute sensitivity daily life with his wife and children in rural Sweden, drawing upon memories of his own childhood to give an inimitably tender perspective on the precious and unique bond between parent and child. The sun, wasps, jellyfish, eyes, lice–the stuff of everyday life is the fodder for his art. Nothing is too small or too vast to escape his attention. This beautifully illustrated book is a personal encyclopaedia on everything from chewing gum to the stars. Through close observation of the objects and phenomena around him, Knausgaard shows us how vast, unknowable and wondrous the world is.
The book is rated 3.69/5 at goodreads.com, from 1653 ratings. See 238 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2CbjHgi.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2CEYYlV.

A nature book recommendation: This Zoo is Not for You by Ross Collins

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2Cbkqhn.
There’s a touch of Tim Minchin about Collins, who has worked on more than 100 children’s books and won several awards: his tone is funny but heartfelt and a little bit rock’n’roll.
Book description from Google Books:
When a small platypus applies for a vacancy at the zoo, he is taken on a rigorous interview process. But he’s far too bland for the chameleons, not nearly graceful enough for the flamingos, and his tricks, quite frankly, will never impress the monkeys. So, disappointed, he leaves. But soon the animals regret being so unkind and join together to welcome him to the zoo. Leading to a very fun party on his Platybus!
The book is rated 3.75/5 at goodreads.com, from 4 ratings. See 1 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2CaVTsQ.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2C9R7fe.

A nature book recommendation: Paddington’s Finest Hour by Michael Bond

A critic review (source Financial Times) can be read at: http://on.ft.com/2BYeyZw.
The book is a delight throughout but the final section is the funniest, as a stage hypnotist is outmatched by one of those famous hard stares.
Book description from Google Books:
A brand-new title from Michael Bond chronicling new and exciting adventures of Paddington Bear!Somehow Paddington always finds himself in extraordinary situations, so it is no surprise when he appears in a popular TV cooking show, finds himself on a stage giving one of his hard stares to a hypnotist, and performing some precarious tricks at Mr. Gruber’s birthday party. For nearly sixty years, Paddington has enchanted readers around the world with his numerous misadventures and earnest good intentions. From master storyteller Michael Bond, and with interior illustrations by R. W. Alley, this new Paddington adventure will charm and delight readers of all ages.
The book is rated 4.11/5 at goodreads.com, from 38 ratings. See 15 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2BZx3wH.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2C00Gy5.

A nature book recommendation: The Great Quake: How the Biggest Earthquake in North America Changed Our Understanding of the Planet by Henry Fountain

A critic review (source LA Times) can be read at: http://lat.ms/2D1hIeA.
Interleaving snapshots of a lost world, the primal power of nature and high science, “The Great Quake” is an outstanding work of nonfiction. It’s also a reminder that the original agent of creative destruction resides not in the corporate boardroom, ivory tower or artist’s salon but beneath our feet.
Book description from Google Books:
“In the tradition of Erik Larson’s Isaac’s Storm, a riveting narrative about the biggest earthquake in recorded history in North America–the 1964 Alaskan earthquake that demolished the city of Valdez and obliterated the coastal village of Chenega–and the scientist sent to look for geological clues to explain the dynamics of earthquakes, who helped to confirm the then controversial theory of plate tectonics. On March 27, 1964, at 5:36 p.m., the biggest earthquake ever recorded in North America–and the second biggest ever in the world, measuring 9.2 on the Richter scale–struck Alaska, devastating coastal towns and villages and killing more than 130 people in what was then a relatively sparsely populated region. In a riveting tale about the almost unimaginable brute force of nature, New York Times science journalist Henry Fountain, in his first trade book, re-creates the lives of the villagers and townspeople living in Chenega, Anchorage, and Valdez; describes the sheer beauty of the geology of the region, with its towering peaks and 20-mile-long glaciers; and reveals the impact of the quake on the towns, the buildings, and the lives of the inhabitants. George Plafker, a geologist for the U.S. Geological Survey with years of experience scouring the Alaskan wilderness, is asked to investigate the Prince William Sound region in the aftermath of the quake, to better understand its origins. His work confirmed the then controversial theory of plate tectonics that explained how and why such deadly quakes occur, and how we can plan for the next one”–
The book is rated 3.93/5 at goodreads.com, from 429 ratings. See 117 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2BVKw8U.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2D30LjS.

A nature book recommendation: Long Road from Jarrow: A journey through Britain then and now by Stuart Maconie

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2C0PMI8.
…Maconie’s book is not only a heartfelt tribute to Wilkinson and the marchers, but a reaffirmation of the role of the personal within the political, and a rallying call for anyone stirred by the story of Jarrow.
Book description from Google Books:
Three and half weeks. Three hundred miles. I saw roaring arterial highway and silent lanes, candlelit cathedrals and angry men in bad pubs. The Britain of 1936 was a land of beef paste sandwiches and drill halls. Now we are nation of vaping and nail salons, pulled pork and salted caramel.In the autumn of 1936, some 200 men from the Tyneside town of Jarrow marched 300 miles to London in protest against the destruction of their towns and industries. Precisely 80 years on, Stuart Maconie, walks from north to south retracing the route of the emblematic Jarrow Crusade. Travelling down the country’s spine, Maconie moves through a land that is, in some ways, very much the same as the England of the 30s with its political turbulence, austerity, north/south divide, food banks and of course, football mania. Yet in other ways, it is completely unrecognisable. Maconie visits the great cities as well as the sleepy hamlets, quiet lanes and roaring motorways. He meets those with stories to tell and whose voices build a funny, complex and entertaining tale of Britain, then and now.
The book is rated 4.32/5 at goodreads.com, from 74 ratings. See 29 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2D5Ryaw.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2C0NVmP.
Google Books preview available in full post.

A nature book recommendation: Shark Drunk: The Art of Catching a Large Shark from a Tiny Rubber Dinghy in a Big Ocean by Morten Stroksnes

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2CZlS6o.
Its beauty, undemanding science and soothing, musing qualities have made the book a bestseller in Norway and beyond. In vexed times, gently informative escapism is a winner for publishers and a refuge for readers.
Book description from Google Books:
A salty story of friendship, adventure, and the explosive life that teems beneath the ocean The Lofoten archipelago, just North of the Arctic Circle, is a place of unsurpassed beauty–the skyline spikes with dramatic peaks; the radiant greens and purples of the Northern Lights follow summers where the sun never sets. It’s a place of small villages, where the art of fishing, though evolving, is still practiced in traditional ways. Beneath the great depths surrounding these islands lurks the infamous Greenland shark. At twenty-four feet in length and weighing more than a ton, it is truly a beast to behold. But the shark is not known just for its size: Its meat contains a toxin that, when consumed, has been known to make people drunk and hallucinatory. Shark Drunk is the true story of two friends, the author and the eccentric artist Hugo Aasjord, as they embark on a wild pursuit of the famed creature–all from a tiny rubber boat. Together they tackle existential questions and encounter the world’s most powerful maelstrom as they attempt to understand the ocean from every possible angle, drawing on poetry, science, history, ecology, mythology, and their own–sometimes intoxicated–observations, meanwhile pursuing the elusive Greenland shark. By turns thrilling, wise, and hilarious, Shark Drunk is a celebration of adventure, marine life, and, above all, friendship. Winner of the Norwegian Brage Prize 2015 Winner of the Norwegian Critics’ Prize for Literature 2015 Winner of the Norwegian Reine Ord Prize at Lofoten International Literature Festival 2016
The book is rated 4.11/5 at goodreads.com, from 831 ratings. See 129 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2D2RvvR.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2BSji2J.

A nature book recommendation: Paddington’s Finest Hour by Michael Bond

A critic review (source Financial Times) can be read at: http://on.ft.com/2BYeyZw.
The book is a delight throughout but the final section is the funniest, as a stage hypnotist is outmatched by one of those famous hard stares.
Book description from Google Books:
A brand-new title from Michael Bond chronicling new and exciting adventures of Paddington Bear!Somehow Paddington always finds himself in extraordinary situations, so it is no surprise when he appears in a popular TV cooking show, finds himself on a stage giving one of his hard stares to a hypnotist, and performing some precarious tricks at Mr. Gruber’s birthday party. For nearly sixty years, Paddington has enchanted readers around the world with his numerous misadventures and earnest good intentions. From master storyteller Michael Bond, and with interior illustrations by R. W. Alley, this new Paddington adventure will charm and delight readers of all ages.
The book is rated 4.14/5 at goodreads.com, from 36 ratings. See 14 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2BZx3wH.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2C00Gy5.

A nature book recommendation: Long Road from Jarrow: A journey through Britain then and now by Stuart Maconie

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2C0PMI8.
…Maconie’s book is not only a heartfelt tribute to Wilkinson and the marchers, but a reaffirmation of the role of the personal within the political, and a rallying call for anyone stirred by the story of Jarrow.
Book description from Google Books:
Three and half weeks. Three hundred miles. I saw roaring arterial highway and silent lanes, candlelit cathedrals and angry men in bad pubs. The Britain of 1936 was a land of beef paste sandwiches and drill halls. Now we are nation of vaping and nail salons, pulled pork and salted caramel.In the autumn of 1936, some 200 men from the Tyneside town of Jarrow marched 300 miles to London in protest against the destruction of their towns and industries. Precisely 80 years on, Stuart Maconie, walks from north to south retracing the route of the emblematic Jarrow Crusade. Travelling down the country’s spine, Maconie moves through a land that is, in some ways, very much the same as the England of the 30s with its political turbulence, austerity, north/south divide, food banks and of course, football mania. Yet in other ways, it is completely unrecognisable. Maconie visits the great cities as well as the sleepy hamlets, quiet lanes and roaring motorways. He meets those with stories to tell and whose voices build a funny, complex and entertaining tale of Britain, then and now.
The book is rated 4.32/5 at goodreads.com, from 74 ratings. See 29 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2D5Ryaw.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2C0NVmP.
Google Books preview available in full post.

A nature book recommendation: Risingtidefallingstar by PHILIP HOARE

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2D5Rp6R.
Throughout, without avoiding such horrors, Hoare conveys a redemptive sense of the wide, continuous and beautiful world, in a remarkable book that sometimes feels rather loosely fitted together, but is always rich and strange.
Book description from Google Books:
Rich and strange from the tip of its title to its deep-sunk bones’ Robert Macfarlane From the author of Leviathan, or, The Whale, comes a composite portrait of the subtle, beautiful, inspired and demented ways in which we have come to terms with our watery planet. In the third of his watery books, the author goes in pursuit of human and animal stories of the sea. Of people enchanted or driven to despair by the water, accompanied by whales and birds and seals – familiar spirits swimming and flying with the author on his meandering odyssey from suburbia into the unknown. Along the way, he encounters drowned poets and eccentric artists, modernist writers and era-defining performers, wild utopians and national heroes – famous or infamous, they are all surprisingly, and sometimes fatally, linked to the sea. Out of the storm-clouds of the twenty-first century and our restive time, these stories reach back into the past and forward into the future. This is a shape-shifting world that has never been certain, caught between the natural and unnatural, where the state between human and animal is blurred. Time, space, gender and species become as fluid as the sea. Here humans challenge their landbound lives through art or words or performance or myth, through the animal and the elemental. And here they are forever drawn back to the water, forever lost and found on the infinite sea.
The book is rated 4.11/5 at goodreads.com, from 27 ratings. See 5 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2D3EHFO.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2BWucVk.