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The Running Sky: A Bird-Watching Life

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3.78  ·  Rating Details ·  55 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
This title records a lifetime of looking at birds. It follows the birds' year from one summer to the next. Dee maps his own observations and encounters over four decades, tracking birds well-known and bizarre, flying free, in the nest, in his hand as he rings them, or dead and stuffed on his mantelpiece.
Hardcover, 258 pages
Published June 1st 2010 by Jonathan Cape (first published January 1st 2009)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Bookhuw
Mar 18, 2013 Bookhuw rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2013
Dee has some thought-provoking reflections to offer in this book - the chapter on the Bristol Gorge is especially melancholic - but this is far too flowery, descending into overly poetic exaltations which I found rather alienating. Some of the digressions are just plain bewildering: was a four page list of times he has seen, heard or merely thought about Starlings really necessary?
Fiona
Aug 19, 2012 Fiona rated it it was amazing
Shelves: miscellaneous
If you enjoy Kathleen Jamie's writing, you'll enjoy this. It leaves you with the same inner calm. Tim Dee writes beautifully and poetically. This is not a book to read cover to cover. It's a book to dip into when you're in the right mood.
Alison
Jan 01, 2011 Alison is currently reading it
Lyrical and moving
Drew Pyke
Dec 22, 2015 Drew Pyke rated it liked it
I wish I could give 2.5 stars. There are real benefits to reading this book, by learning new things about birds you know of (like how robins use ant acid to rid themselves of lice) and about birds you never see plainly in the UK (like the woodcock and nightjar).
There is a really worrying chapter (January) where he visits a major in Africa, describing the industrial scale genocide of birds which he undertakes in pursuit of scientific study. In a separate chapter he also glorifies the taking of e
...more
Paulfozz
Although perhaps containing a little too much exposition of poetry than of Tim's birdwatching life for my taste, this nevertheless is a very good read, with an interesting mixture of evocation and plain-spoken account. It assembles events from Tim's birding life into a month-by-month chronicle, with many passages that I found quite emotional to read. It's clear that Tim has as much love for language as for birds, the style reminds me a little of Richard Mabey, who also flits between discussion ...more
Ian Smith
Feb 23, 2014 Ian Smith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A beautiful, articulate and evocative celebration of bird life, bird watching and bird song. Delightful.
Ian Nickson
May 22, 2013 Ian Nickson rated it liked it
There is a fine line between profound and pretentious, which this book straddles. Over-written, in parts. Beautiful in others. Lovely but lovey.
Tessa
Feb 09, 2013 Tessa rated it liked it
Although this book was beautifully written I have to admit to only getting half way through before giving up.
Steve Halton
Sep 10, 2012 Steve Halton rated it it was amazing
A beautiful piece of creative writing blending childhood, birds and landscape. An evocative and sensitive book. Everyone should read this!
Eddie Chapman
Apr 13, 2011 Eddie Chapman rated it it was amazing
Beautiful, throught provoking and sporadically dark in a unique way. Unlike anything I have ever read. Would recommend it to any reader with a functioning brain.
Kaye
I really wanted to like this book, but it just didn't work for me. A lot of over-poetic navel-staring. Maybe not for me right now.
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