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!

Richard Carter is a writer and photo­grapher living in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire.WebsiteFacebookTwitterNewsletterBooks
Buy my book: On the Moor: Science, History and Nature on a Country Walk
…wonderful. Science and history and geography and evolution and culture all tangled up in musings while walking about the moors around Hebden Bridge.”—PZ Myers
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