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The Curious Nature Guide: Explore the Natural Wonders All Around You

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  362 ratings  ·  70 reviews
With dozens of simple prompts and exercises, best-selling author, naturalist, and artist Clare Walker Leslie offers adults of all ages an invitation to step outside for just a few minutes a day, reignite the sense of wonder and curiosity about the natural world, and discover the peace and grounding that can be found by connecting to nature as part of daily life. Using phot ...more
Paperback, 144 pages
Published September 8th 2015 by Storey Publishing, LLC
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Average rating 4.07  · 
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❀Aimee❀ Just one more page...
This is an enjoyable mix of ideas and themes. Just reading the book itself was calming, soothing, and inspiring.

The author encourages readers to be more mindful of the natural world around us. We are guided through different ideas for mindfulness and appreciation of the natural world around us. The pages are filled with either photographs or artwork of nature in many different mediums (pen, watercolor, pencil, and more). It is a quick read - with just the right amount of information on each page
Recommended Read! To see the photos from my nature journal, see the review on my site. Text only below.

THE CURIOUS NATURE GUIDE inspires adults to focus on their senses, encouraging creativity. It’s exactly what I needed to energize my love of nature to the next level. Even though this book is aimed at adults, many of the suggestions could be shared with children and would make an appreciated family gift.

I requested this book for review because I love any book that makes me stop and appreciate t
Am Y
Jul 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
My absolute favourite book to date.

This is a book about nature and how to connect to it. The author talks about many aspects of the natural world, from seasons to landscapes to space and seas and so much more. Each topic comprises a few pages of facts and trivia, and sometimes related quotes or literary extracts. The author then poses questions you can ask yourself concerning your surroundings. The text is usually printed on top of a photo or photos related to that topic, so while you read,
Elizabeth A
May 07, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019, non-fiction, art
I am a fan of this author's work and have loved some of her other books. She is a gentle guide that reminds you to stop and take note of the nature around you, and this book does more of the same.

The book itself is beautifully designed with lovely illustrations and art, and while I appreciated the sentiments, I was disappointed by the lackluster text. This is labeled for adult readers, but would work well for younger explorers as well. I did appreciate that the author constantly urges you to pu
Aug 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
As a fan of Clare Walker Leslie’s previous books, I was thrilled to get an advance copy of her new book, “The Curious Nature Guide.” This beautiful book does not disappoint.

While I had an electronic copy, I think this is a book that likely shines in printed format. The guide makes heavy use of imagery and is filled both with gorgeous photography and the author’s own illustrations. Unlike a traditional field guide, this book provides suggestions and an invitation to readers to connect with nature
Dec 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
loving the simple nature prompts and exercises found in this book 🌿🌱☘️🌴🌳🍃🌾

as much as im into nature walks recently, i found that there are actually so many things that i can do while hiking!!!! like appeciating the small wonders - to start collecting notes, photos, or drawings of small wonders in order to make a connections with how i feel to be in nature and to make experiences more wondrous & exciting. i was actually feeling very inspired to keep an observation journal on my walks too. 📝

Mar 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
An excellent resource for helping yourself or your children develop a closer relationship with the natural world using curiosity, mindfulness and sensory awareness.
Dec 13, 2018 added it
This is a cute book full of ideas on how to creatively engage with and pay attention to nature, even if it's just looking outside your own kitchen window. I enjoyed the illustrations in this book a lot, and loved being reminded that we're all able to be creative and curious with the natural world on a daily basis.

This book gives a delightful taste of a diverse range of biomes and ecosystems through quotes, artwork, and thoughtful passages. It also has a great deal of scientific facts sprinkled
Aug 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
So that's how people start keeping journals.

Though it may look so, this book is too inspiring to be a commercial. It gave me lots of ideas that can be applied both practically and occasionally.
Apr 14, 2020 rated it really liked it
An interesting concept of a book that explores what it means to be mindful and how to re-wild yourself in Nature. Due to the concept and its detailed activities I chose to give the book an additional star even though in all fairness the author doesn't seem to have a chosen audience.

First of all the book is broken into three different categories with each having a certain focus. The first half is about reintroducing the reader back to nature with slow steps and starting with the nature spots th
Nicole Penney
Jun 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
This is a good read for someone who loves nature but isn’t a science buff. It consists of about equal parts easy science, suggestions with how to connect with nature, and profound quotes about nature.

As someone who lives in the country, many of the “connect with nature” ideas were basic, and easily done from my backyard, but enjoyable and thought-provoking nonetheless.

I came away with a deeper realization of how important it is to stop the chaos and just “be” in nature.
Fern Adams
Jun 24, 2020 rated it liked it
Quite simplistic. I felt this book’s primary audience is people who want to start to get out in nature but are maybe a bit afraid and apprehensive and don’t know where to start. It’s full of great starting block ideas of things to do and look for that are accessible to pretty much everyone. Didn’t realise before starting it however that this was from the USA so it’s examples weren’t quite so relevant however was still interesting and given me some ideas.
Mar 11, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: nature, art
A beautiful combination of photography, art work, journaling, and nature quotes. Best quote: "We often forget that we are nature. Nature is not something separate from us. So when we say that we have lost our connection to nature, we've lost our connection to ourselves." Andy Goldsworthy ...more
Nov 16, 2019 rated it liked it
Aesthetically pleasing, took about 18 minutes to go through. If you have no idea how to be mindful, observant, creative, engaged with nature, grateful, this is certainly a nice primer. As these practices aren't exactly new to me, I think I would've preferred looking at the author's actual nature journal for general inspiration or appreciation. ...more
Oct 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
If you are looking for a little piece of serenity, pick up this book. It will remind you to connect with nature and be at peace.
David Ward
Feb 28, 2017 rated it liked it
The Curious Nature Guide: Explore the Natural Wonders All Around You by Claire Walker Leslie (Storey Publishing 2015) (508). I'm of two minds about this little nature guide, which the author both wrote and illustrated. The illustrations are absolutely beautiful. Her pages are masterpieces of visual composure. Her watercolors are gorgeous. Her photography is stunning. Yet as much as I admire her artwork, the written text does not rise to the same level. The science and nature of her narrative see ...more
This would be a fantastic book for teachers and parents. The activities are a great way to introduce kids to nature and keep them interested. The watercolor illustrations are a wonderful addition too.

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Down to the River and Up to the Trees
Nests: Fifty Nests and the Birds that Built Them
A Sand County Almanac and Sketches Here and There
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Summer World: A Season of Bounty
Wild Moments
Seeing Trees: Dis
Jul 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
From Netgalley for a review:

This book is kinda wonderful, blending beauty and simplicity in a way that connects you with nature.

I requested this book from Netgalley because I have been struggling as a naturalist, having moved from the mountains of Pennsylvania to the suburbs of Kansas City a few years ago, I find myself having a rough time connecting with the outside world. Mostly because the summer I moved out here was a record setting drought and heat wave, it in all honesty felt like I had m
Sep 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
From the photography to the illustrations, I loved this book! The author does a great job of encouraging and reminding one to be aware of their surroundings and to connect with nature. There are suggestions and exercises that will help encourage and inspire you to reach out for your creative side and possibly do some sketches or write about your surroundings. It makes you ground and think. It doesn’t matter if you live in the city or country, this would make a great gift for someone.

Thank you to
Jul 08, 2019 rated it liked it
This is more like a picture book for adults. Not that it has to be for adults, any age could get something from it. But if you look at it as a kid looks at a picture book, it is a better fit than your typical adult read. A kid typically picks several picture books and reads through them enjoying each for several minutes before moving on and without investing much into it. You could break the book up and try to read a page a day or something and let it really soak in more, maybe. It is a beautifu ...more
Mar 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is an outstanding book! Anyone, of any age, would enjoy it, I think. The pictures and drawings are gorgeous and it is a delightful riot of bright colors from start to finish. It also really makes you think about nature and how we can all enjoy it on a daily basis, whether we live in the country or city or suburbs. It was so FUN to read, as well. I can not wait to read it again. It also gives you a lot of fun activities and crafts and art projects you can do to enjoy nature. Would be good fo ...more
Laura Gilfillan
Mar 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nature-science
It's March, it's been a tough winter, and I'm ready for spring. I guess I hoped I could get a taste of nature through this book, and I did, but I'm still longing for spring. And I liked one of the ideas it inspired for me, that every day I should get out my camera and take one picture, even if it is something inside the house, like one of my plants, or a pet, or some of the other wildlife I have residing in my home. Just to keep me aware and appreciative of the nature that is already all around ...more
Aug 22, 2019 rated it liked it
This was a nice soothing balm after the irritation of The Wander Society. It combines samples from the author's illustrated journals alongside artsy photographs. The text serves as an introduction to keeping a nature journal without being overly prescriptive. It provides numerous "try this" exercises along with informative natural history tidbits. ...more
Had some good ideas, and loved the art--I think I was looking for something with less fun/interesting facts, and more inspiration/howtos, personally. Did feel good to recognize that a lot of the activities are things I've slowly started to do more and more over the past several years. Also, I loved the page re: keeping observations and small wonders, so I think her other book may be more what I'm looking for. Still glad I grabbed this when I happened to pass it in the library! ...more
May 13, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful and inspiring. Lovely artwork. I am inspired by a few ideas...
-sunsets - note the colors at sunset for a month, drawing out squares or lines on a page. Write dates.
-in winter, learn about deciduous and evergreen trees.
-dried flowers, make a card to send.
-find different artists that inspire you through their natural renderings. Monet (water lilies, haystacks), O’Keefe (flowers, desert), Winslow Homer (seascapes).
May 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction, nature
I first had this book as an ebook but when I saw the illustration I knew I want to get the physical book to really enjoy the illustrations. I loved this book. The whole book is about connecting to nature. There are little tidbits about the mysteries of nature and how it works. There are simply prompts and exercises to try using sight and sounds. This book would be great to do with your kids.
Oct 08, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: junk
Nice try. The author tried to make a pretty book from a lifetime of accumulated New Age superstition. Only somewhere the author got lazy and the cute, yet inexperienced drawings are replaced with stock photography amateurishly collated leading to a quite ugly result.
Oct 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
A book that's creatively and thoughtfully put together. Heartfelt writing and easy-to-read text. Beautiful sketches and paintings by the author. An inspiring guide for anyone who needs a pause or a reminder to drink in nature around you. ...more
Jan 15, 2021 rated it it was amazing
This is such a lovely little book. It inspires me to pack watercolors for my next hike. I checked it out from the library and read it over a few short days, but this would be a fantastic book to have on hand and read any random page from for a moment of connection and wonder.
Kathy Nealen
Nov 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Colorful, soothing guide on how to appreciate the many aspects of nature around us. It seems to be intended for adults; but, I think it could be used with children.
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