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Going Feral: Field Notes on Wonder and Wanderlust
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Going Feral: Field Notes on Wonder and Wanderlust

4.61  ·  Rating details ·  18 ratings  ·  8 reviews
In these deeply personal and intellectually curious essays, Heather Durham explores wild America weaving the unique perspectives of trained ecologist, inquisitive philosopher, and restless nomad, probing intricacies of the natural world as profoundly as she does herself. She wanders from New England vernal pools to Pacific Northwest salmon runs, Rocky Mountain pine forests ...more
Paperback, First Edition, 206 pages
Published January 3rd 2019 by Wandering Aengus Press
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Iris Graville
May 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Durham brings her readers along with her through poetic prose informed by a naturalist’s wisdom. Whether or not you’ve ever been in the vicinity of cougars, coyotes, black bears, bats, or eagles, Durham's descriptions will show you these animals' magnetism for her. And no matter if, like me, you can identify only a couple of birdcalls in your backyard or from a city high-rise balcony, her writing will lure you into these creatures’ languages. I’m grateful for the companionship of Heather Durham’ ...more
Feb 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a treat to read this debut author's essay collection, a stunning exploration of the wilderness, and of our human experience as part of it. The terrain of the essays is far-ranging across the U.S., from New England to Florida to the Rockies, from the Southwest desert to the Pacific Northwest Cascadia zone. Have you ever wrestled a 50-lb. salmon from an upriver stream with only your hands? Sat day after day in a bird blind at 9000 feet to capture, measure, and tag migratory birds? Interned as ...more
Jackie Haskins
Oct 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Going Feral opens pages into wildness, letting you see with owl eyes, hear with bat sonar and smell scents earthy, raw, and true. With not a jot of sop or sentimentality, Heather Durham opens a path to deep joy along the secret trails of the fantastic wild. Honest about her own mistakes, clear-eyed about the despair we who love wild things often feel, Heather shows us how to find—perhaps in spring peepers light as nickels, froggie slushies now lying motionless, ice crystals in their veins, yet s ...more
Oct 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
If you want to know more about what it's like to fall in love with nature, what healing powers it possesses, pick up this book. Durham takes you to places you might never get to, and lets us in deep to how it feels to understand and crave nature as you might never crave another human's company. A gem of a book. ...more
Kate Kaufmann
Aug 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Going Feral is one beautiful read! Heather Durham paints with words to convey vivid imagery and experience, from the close-in intimacy of what it's like to have a butterfly land on your forehead to majestic panoramas of wild, open spaces. Many of her sentences and sentiments are so beautifully expressed I gasped.

Durham has a special relationship with the natural world that's challenging to fathom. She shares her perspective so freely and clearly that we readers are gifted with smells, sounds, a
Dec 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book boldly and lovingly invites the reader to re-examine their own relationship with the natural world. Through creative, evocative snapshots of ecosystems she has known, Heather Durham shows the depth and complexity of connecting with the land. Sometimes it is a tough love, and not all her experiences are positive or easy. Even these essays shine with emotion, introspection, and powerful lessons. You come away from reading this book pondering the wild world outside your own windows; with ...more
Chris LaTray
Jul 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019
I read a quote somewhere years ago, I don't remember where, in which the wise person suggested that we read books in order to know the author ... or something like that. I don't disagree. There are many of us who don't really listen to podcasts, who don't binge-watch the latest television series, who really don't plug into the world the way common culture expects us to, and often feel alienated as a result. When we find someone who seems like us—when I find someone who seems like me—in a book, s ...more
Melissa Hart
Feb 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
What does it feel like to live on an island for three days with no other human around?

How do multiple close-up encounters with a cougar change the way one thinks about mortality?

In what ways does the natural world prove a lifesaving antidote to the small cruelties that people inflict on one another, and what does it mean to discover a community committed to learning about--and protecting--that world?

Heather Durham, in Going Feral, answers each of these questions in intimate, vibrant essays ric
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Heather Durham is a nature essayist and naturalist who holds a master of science in
environmental biology from Antioch New England University and a master of fine arts in creative nonfiction from the Northwest Institute of Literary Arts. She’s held a variety of environmental jobs around the country, from interpretive park ranger to field biologist, trails worker to restoration ecologist. She curren

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