This very fine short book, published in London, is one of the most
delightful books I have read in a long time. A dear friend of mine
heard Simon Barnes himself reading from it on BBC radio and got the book
for me, knowing that I'd love it. One cannot fail at being a bad bird
watcher, really. There is no wrong way to do it.
Since many of us are indeed closet bad birdwatchers (and probably bad
lots-of-other-things), we may be thankful to Barnes for legitimizing our
practice. The subtitle: "To the greater glory of life" kind of says it
all. A person with a passion for life and a good sense of humor - what
more could one ask? He and I have somewhat different ideas about the
nature of things perhaps. (For instance he is scornful of various new
age-y things that I love; he seems to feel that we should appreciate the
wonder of other living things without feeling that we can communication
with them, while I… well, you know.) In any case we agree completely on
the need for conservation. I am very appreciative of this marvelous
He's written other books, both fiction and non-fiction. I can't wait.