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Beyond Spring review: Bird Watching magazine

HERE IS A REVIEW IN BIRD WATCHING magazine December Issue, from its editor Matt Merritt – on BEYOND SPRING: Wanderings through Nature – Matthew Oates:

“There’s something very pleasingly old-fashioned about this book, a chronicle of Matthew Oates’ wanderings through England and its nature.

It’s a fact he acknowledges by regular reference to his predecessors, great Victorian nature writers, such as Richard Jefferies, the Romantic poets, and in particular the Edwardian poet Edward Thomas, whose own books, especially In Pursuit Of Spring, are a constant touchstone, here.

One of the great pleasures of Oates’ writing is the breadth of the references he encompasses in his easy, accessible style – you come away from reading a chapter determined to follow up one lead or another, whether it’s a poet you hadn’t heard of previously (I’m delighted to see names such as David Morley, Jo Bell and Angela France crop up here), or a particular species and its behaviour that has sparked your imagination.

For all that, its style sometimes evokes a bygone era, Oates manages to address plenty of contemporary conservation and ecological issues in his prose, as well as highlighting some habitats that Thomas would probably have passed by – city centre parks, motorway service stations, and the like.

That all makes it a great book for dipping into, especially in the dead of winter, and I defy you not to come away from it determined to make the most of every single minute
of next spring.”

For more details about the book go here. It is available worldwide. Nadia x

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