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Fingers in the Sparkle Jar: A Memoir (Paperback)Chris Packham (author)
Written with breathtaking candour, Packham’s deeply affecting memoir of a lonely childhood given purpose and meaning by an intensely close bond with the natural world pushes the boundaries of what great nature writing can achieve.
As announced on BBC's Springwatch, Fingers in the Sparkle Jar was voted Britain's favourite piece of nature writing in an online poll organised by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. Described by one voter as “the most powerful, honest account I’ve ever read about how nature can shape a person”, this searingly personal memoir is also an expert, intimate observation of the natural world and a powerful argument for why it matters.
Every minute was magical, every single thing it did was fascinating and everything it didn't do was equally wondrous, and to be sat there, with a Kestrel, a real live Kestrel, my own real live Kestrel on my wrist! I felt like I'd climbed through a hole in heaven's fence.
An introverted, unusual young boy, isolated by his obsessions and a loner at school, Chris Packham only felt at ease in the fields and woods around his suburban home.
But when he stole a young Kestrel from its nest, he was about to embark on a friendship that would teach him what it meant to love, and that would change him forever.
In his rich, lyrical and emotionally exposing memoir, Chris brings to life his childhood in the 70s, from his bedroom bursting with fox skulls, birds' eggs and sweaty jam jars, to his feral adventures. But pervading his story is the search for freedom, meaning and acceptance in a world that didn't understand him.
Beautifully wrought, this coming-of-age memoir will be unlike any you've ever read.
Publisher: Ebury Publishing
Number of pages: 384
Weight: 260 g
Dimensions: 198 x 126 x 23 mm
'Fingers in the Sparkle Jar is like nothing else I know - a flickering vat of life itself. A brilliant and remarkable book.' - Robert Macfarlane
'It's bold and beautiful, both raw and lyrical, and a rather special book.' - Matt Haig, The Independent
'A beautiful, riveting and disturbing read.' - The Guardian
'Incredibly powerful and moving.' - Richard E. Grant
'This book is courageous, disturbing, original and at times brilliant.' - Simon Barnes
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“A Powerful and Shining Memoir”
'Fingers in the Sparkle Jar' is unique, startling, bewildering, frustrating and like nothing else I've ever read. Completely engrossing, this is a book you wander around thinking about and then return... More
“Unexpected but fabulous!”
This is a difficult book to review or even to describe but it is absolutely worth reading. Whilst described as a memoir it is more a collection of perfectly framed moments, some of which are hauntingly beautiful,... More
“A love of nature mixed with a life of autism and mental health; astounding”
I am in awe.
Chris Packham's memoir Fingers in the Sparkle Jar is a brutal, beautiful book that subverts the memoir genre through third person accounts of events involving him. The timeline flicks around, with... More
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