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From Nick Baker diving with basking sharks off the Cornish coast to J A Baker's vivid descriptions of peregrines in the Essex countryside, from Gilbert White's observations at Selbourne 300 years ago to Sir John Lister-kaye tracking deer in a Scottish woodland, this book celebrates Britain's wildlife and landscapes with some of the greatest nature writers in the world.
Sir David Attenborough, vice-president of The Wildlife Trusts contributed the foreword for the book. He said: "I have been fortunate enough to travel widely, but I continue to be inspired by wildlife at home. Reading through this volume I have been reminded that I am not alone. This wonderful collection of some of the greatest nature writers in Britain's history is a pleasure to read from start to finish and a valuable addition to any naturalist's library."
Naturalist and television presenter, Steve Backshall, said: "As a kid I was inspired more than anything by writers who managed to make natural history, and the wild, exotic world come to life. Authors like Jack London, Willard Price and Wilbur Smith, who created impossible missions and wondrous characters that made me yearn to be experiencing their adventures for myself.
"Later in life it was the real life tales of Gerald Durrell, Charles Darwin, Sir David Attenborough and Alfred Russell Wallace that caught my imagination, and cemented the certainty that such achievements and experiences need not be merely fiction. To be thought worthy of inclusion in a work that contains such giants, is one of the most exciting things that has ever happened to me!"
The anthology features contributions from: Andrew Lack, Bill Oddie, Charles Darwin, Charles Waterton, Chris Baines, Chris Beardshaw, Colin J. Martin, Colin Tudge, David Lack, Dorothy Wordsworth, Dominic Couzens, Edmund Selous, Edward A Armstrong, Edward Grey, Edward Thomas, Eric Ennion, Francis Kilvert, Gavin Maxwell, Geoffrey Grigson, George Montagu, Gerard Manley Hopkins, Gilbert White, Henry Eliot Howard, Henry Williamson, John Alec Baker, John Aubrey, John Buxton, John Clare, Jules Pretty, Kathleen Jamie, Mark Cocker, Miriam Rothschild, Nan Shepherd, Richard Jefferies, Richard Mabey, Robert Macfarlane, Roger Deakin, Ronald Lockley, Ruth Padel, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Simon Barnes, Sir Alfred Russel Wallace, Sir John Lister Kaye, Sir Joseph Banks, Stephen Moss, Thomas Gray, Tim Dee, William Cobbett, Nick Baker, Elizabeth Jane Howard, and Paul Evans.
Michael Allen is the Chairman of the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts. He is a retired lecturer of English Literature at Cambridge University and has a life-long passion for literature and ornithology. Sonya Patel Ellis is an experienced freelance writer on the environment, wildlife and travel.
This wonderful collection of some of the greatest nature writers in Britain's history is a pleasure to read from start to finish." Sir David Attenborough