Tim Dee’s The Running Sky is set to become a classic. Although each chapter covers a different month in the birdwatching year, this is not an account of one year’s birdwatching. Instead, Dee reminisces about encounters with birds over 40 years that he associates with the month in question.
The writing is wonderful, bordering on poetic in places. As Dee himself states:
Science makes discoveries when it admits to not knowing, poetry endures if it looks hard at real things. Nature writing, if such a thing exists, lives in this territory where science and poetry meet. It must be made of both; it needs truth and beauty.
Dee clearly demonstrates that ‘nature writing’ blending truth and beauty with apparent ease does indeed exist.
“…wonderfully droll, witty and entertaining… At their best Carter’s moorland walks and his meandering intellectual talk are part of a single, deeply coherent enterprise: a restless inquiry into the meaning of place and the nature of self.”
—Mark Cocker, author and naturalist
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