241 pages, 1 b/w photo
Strands: A Year of Discoveries on the Beach describes a year's worth of walking on the ultimate beach: inter-tidal and constantly turning up revelations: mermaid's purses, lugworms, sea potatoes, messages in bottles, buried cars, beached whales and a perfect cup from a Cunard liner.
This is a series of meditations prompted by walking on the wild estuarial beaches of Ainsdale Sands between Blackpool and Liverpool, Strands: A Year of Discoveries on the Beach is about what is lost and buried then discovered, about all the things you find on a beach, dead or alive, about flotsam and jetsam, about mutability and transformation – about sea-change.
"A fine book [...] Transparent, undeceived prose"
– Kate Kellaway, Guardian
"Compelling [...] well-contextualised, sharply-observed, clued up, environmentally aware and deeply researched"
"With clarity and candour, in the natural voice of a modern storyteller, she tells what she sees at the intersection of herself and whatever is delivered to her by the tide"
– The Times
"Sprackland has a wonderfully curious eye"
– Financial Times
"Simply gorgeous [...] One of the finest piece of writing, nature or otherwise, to emerge this year"
– Big Issue
"If a book can have the appeal of a really good long walk, this one does"
– Daily Mail
"A delightful book"
– Sally Morris, Daily Mail
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Jean Sprackland's first collection of poetry, Tattoos for Mothers Day, was shortlisted for the Forward Prize in 1999. Her second collection, Hard Water, was published by Cape in 2003 and shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize and the Whitbread Poetry Award. In 2004 she was named by the Poetry Book Society as one of the 'Next Generation Poets'. Her third collection, Tilt, won the 2007 Costa Poetry Award. She lives in London.