As kingfishers catch fire birds and books
As Kingfishers Catch Fire: Birds & Books by Alex PrestonWhen Alex Preston was 15, he stopped being a birdwatcher. Adolescence and the scorn of his peers made him put away his binoculars, leave behind the nature reserves and the quiet companionship of his fellow birders. His love of birds didn't disappear though. Rather, it went underground, and he began birdwatching in the books that he read, creating his own personal anthology of nature writing that brought the birds of his childhood back to brilliant life. Looking for moments 'when heart and bird are one', Preston weaves the very best writing about birds into a personal narrative that is as much about the joy of reading and writing as it is about the thrill of wildlife. Beautifully illustrated and illuminated by the celebrated graphic artist Neil Gower, As Kingfishers Catch Fire is a book to love and to hold, to return to again and again, to marvel at the way that authors across the centuries have captured the endless grace and variety of birds.
As Kingfishers Catch Fire: Birds & Books
The award-winning novelist, author of This Bleeding City , The Revelations and In Love and War has sheared away from fiction to collaborate with the deservedly acclaimed artist Neil Gower in making an object of thrilling beauty. The challenge that Preston and Gower have set themselves is to distil the literary essences of the birds that are their subject. We should all be so lucky as to leave behind such heirs. A favourite aunt introduces Preston to the poetry of swallows through the words of Kathleen Jamie. The choice of birds is both eclectic and personal.
See a Problem?
Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again.
I n the middle of writing this book, Alex Preston and his young family moved from north London to a rose-clad, redbrick rectory in Kent. Nonetheless, the move has been a happy one, in part because he can lie awake at night and listen to nightingales. Even birds allow no escape from politics, Preston says. To hear the real thing has been a source of elation for Preston. He first became interested in birds at the age of seven, on holiday in the Isle of Wight, when he saw a peregrine. In adolescence he dumped his Barbour and binoculars in favour of girls, Nirvana and skateboarding. But the habit of birdwatching never quite left him, and soon he was finding a new way to observe them, in books.