It’s December, it’s time to start Christmas shopping. And for the nature-lovers in your life, we’ve wrapped up a selection of the nicest, newest books... Stephen Moss’s The Robin: A Biography brings a dose of seasonal cheer (Square Peg, £10.99), while the The Secret Life of the Owl by John Lewis-Stempel (Doubleday, £7.99) explores the legends and history of these wondrous birds. If it’s puffins, fulmars et al that you’re after,
The Seabird’s Cry by Adam Nicolson (Harper Collins, £16.99) is an entrancing account of the lives, loves and losses of 10 species, and As
Kingfishers Catch Fire by Alex Preston (Corsair, £25) is a must for bird and literature lovers.
TO MARVEL AT AND DELIGHT OVER…
For a gift with coffee-table clout, consider Blue Planet II (BBC Books, £25); Wildlife
Photographer of the Year: Portfolio 27, a showcase of stonkingly brilliant images from across the globe (NHM, £25); or Birds in
Pictures by renowned photographer Markus Varesvuo (New Holland, £30). Poets and artists will love the vast-format The Lost Words by Robert MacFarlane (Hamish Hamilton, £20), an utterly exquisite series of poems and paintings, and Found in the Fields by Carrie Akroyd (Mascot Media, £29.95), a stunning compendium of landscape lithographs.
TO CURL UP WITH…
History comes to life in A Sea Monster’s Tale by Colin Speedie (Wild Nature Press, £22), a vivid account of hunts, slaughter and eventual saving of the basking shark off the British Isles. The adventurous among you will enjoy Katherine Lowrie’s personal story of triumph with Running
South America (Whittles, £20); but for a gentler read, delve into The Otters’ Tale by Simon Cooper (William Collins, £16.99). For lyrical nature prose at its finest, look no further than
The Nature of Winter by Jim Crumley (Saraband, £12.99) or Wonderland by Brett Westwood and Stephen Moss (John Murray, £20).
TO MAKE YOU SMILE…
Bill Oddie’s Tales of a Ludicrous Bird Gardener (New Holland, £16.99) offers an entertaining back-yard retrospective and a portrait of his plot, a hotbed of gnomes where birds eat out of saxophones. Lastly, for a bit of stocking-filler fun, don’t forget the Comedy Wildlife Photography
Awards – what’s not to like about frogs that look like they’re smiling (535, £9.99)?