Book review: ‘Surfacing’ by Kathleen Jamie

A third collection of wonderful essays from my favourite writer.

Surfacing

Kathleen Jamie is my favourite writer, so I looked forward to this third collection of essays with considerable excitement. I re-read its two predecessors, Findings and Sightlines, in Anglesey every September. Favourite books for favourite places.

Surfacing differs slightly from its predecessors in that it comprises three relatively long pieces interspersed between more typical-length essays. In addition, there is less nature and more archaeology in the latest collection—which suited the former archaeologist in me just fine.

Jamie’s no-nonsense, precise prose is as enjoyable to read as ever, whether she’s writing about archaeological digs in Alaska and Orkney, reminiscing about struggling to get to Tibet, or simply describing reflections in a train window. Surfacing also contains a couple moving accounts of personal life-events.

If you enjoyed Jamie’s previous books, you don’t need my personal recommendation. But, for those of you who haven’t yet read her work, what are you waiting for? You’re in for a treat!

Note: I will receive a small referral fee if you buy this book via one of the above links.

By Richard Carter

Richard Carter is a writer and photo­grapher living in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire. Website · Facebook · Twitter · Newsletter · Book

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On the Moor

Carter cleverly weaves in science at every opportunity, whether it’s inspired by direct observations of birds and animals and plants […] or spinning off from a trig point onto the geometric methods of surveying through history all the way up to GPS. […] All in all, this is probably best described as a great ramble on the moor with an expert guide. […] It’s a wuthering wonder.
Brian Clegg, popular science author and communicator, Popular Science Books

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