Birdsong in a Time of Silence
A lyrical celebration of birdsong, and the rekindling of a deep passion for nature.
‘At this time of year, blackbirds never simply fly: instead, like reluctantly retired officers, they’re always “on manoeuvres”, and it’s easy to see from their constant agitation that for them every flower bed is a bunker, every shed a redoubt and every hedge-bottom a potential place of ambush’
As the world went silent in lockdown, something else happened; for the first time, many of us started becoming more aware of the spring sounds of the birds around us. Birdsong in a Time of Silence is a lyrical, uplifting reflection on these sounds and what they mean to us.
From a portrait of the blackbird – most prominent and articulate of the early spring singers – to explorations of how birds sing, the science behind their choice of song and nest-sites, and the varied meanings that people have brought to and taken from birdsong, this book ultimately shows that natural history and human history cannot be separated. It is the story of a collective reawakening brought on by the strangest of springs.
A delightful meditation on the wonder of birdsong, and how it helped us at a moment of crisis -- Stephen Moss This is a joyous and profound meditation on birdsong and what it means to us, a book that brings to life an essential part of the natural world that most of us take so much for granted that we scarcely notice it -- PD Smith * Guardian (Book of the Day) * Lovatt's approach is fresh, joyful and uncomplicated. Birdsong in a Time of Silence recalls a spring we will never forget but also reminds us that the pandemic grew out of our disregard for nature, and could presage ecological disaster -- Nicola Chester * Financial Times * This is a lyrical, exhilarating work of utter loveliness * Saga * Beautifully observed... exhilaratingly original... [Written with] exquisite prose that soars as high as his beloved birds -- Bel Mooney * Daily Mail *
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