Meadowland: the private life of an English field (Paperback)John Lewis-Stempel (author)
An exquisitely crafted paean to the English meadow, Lewis-Stempel’s enchanting book takes the reader through the developments of the rural year and the biographies of the creatures that inhabit its grass and soil.
Winner of the Wainwright Prize 2015
What really goes on in the long grass? Meadowland gives an unique and intimate account of an English meadow's life from January to December, together with its biography.
In exquisite prose, John Lewis-Stempel records the passage of the seasons from cowslips in spring to the hay-cutting of summer and grazing in autumn, and includes the biographies of the animals that inhabit the grass and the soil beneath: the badger clan, the fox family, the rabbit warren, the skylark brood and the curlew pair, among others. Their births, lives, and deaths are stories that thread through the book from first page to last.
Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd
Number of pages: 304
Weight: 240 g
Dimensions: 198 x 127 x 19 mm
'My book of the year. Meadowland is a seasonal journey of discovery, a pilgrimage that nurtures the soul and gives meaning to life; all life. Each beautifully crafted sentence provides a stepping-stone to absorb and understand the land, with the writer's lyrical voice acting as guide and trusty staff as well as illuminating the mind's eye with wonderful imagery and perceptive literary devices.' - Stuart Winter, The Sunday Express
'There is barely a creature in Meadowland that I didn't learn at least one interesting new fact about (the occasional tendency of badgers to hold funerals for one another is a particular favourite).' - Tom Cox, The Observer
'Engaging, closely-observed and beautiful ... this author's deep love of the world around him is as inspiring as it is entertaining. This wonderful book ... is most of all, a moving hymn of gratitude from a man so rooted, so full of joy that he likens his land to a cathedral and knows that: 'To stand alone in a field in England and listen to the morning chorus of the birds is to remember why life is precious'. - Bel Mooney, The Daily Mail
'[JLS] has a sharp eye, a fluent pen and that omnivorous, innocently English curiosity about wild creatures... There are lyrical moments aplenty but this is not the cloying 'regardez-moi maman' nature writing. JLS's tone is level, involved, humorous and even self-deprecating... This is a rich, interesting book, generously studded with raisins of curious information.' - Angus Clarke, The Times
'My holiday reading: [John Lewis-Stempel] knows not only all about the different kinds of life in such a place and how they all fit together, but can also write so vividly.' - Philip Pullman, The Guardian
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“A fascinating eco system beneath our feet.”
This glorious nature book is not just one biography of an English meadowland, but many biographies in one, the thousands of creatures and animals that inhabit this small piece of land. Small to us but an entire... More
“Brilliant primer on England's natural habitat”
Meadowland: The Private Life of an English Field is a month-by-month account of the wild and domestic animal activity that takes place in the English countryside, a stones throw from Wales, at the foot of the Black... More
“This blessed plot, this earth, this realm...”
A gorgeously quiet book that immerses you in the wonderful day to day life of a single meadow. It is amazing how much goes on at all levels of flora and fauna - things that you only notice when you take the time to... More
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