A Naturalist at Large: The Best Essays of Bernd Heinrich

7 CDs. 8:20 hrs. Dreamscape. May 2018. ISBN 9781520098821. $49.99. SCI
Heinrich (Mind of the Raven) has been observing the interconnectivity of nature since he was a boy. This latest book collects his favorite essays written for a general audience and published in magazines (most commonly Natural History) from 1974 to 2017. Essays are grouped by the subject they concern (plants, insects, mammals, birds, and evolutionary advantages) and weave together Heinrich's field observations and life story. The majority of the content concerns research conducted on Heinrich's property in Maine. The essays deeply explore their subjects and display the author's attention to detail and patient and keen observational skills. Heinrich's essays often preference data over story. While naturalists will likely find this absorbing, casual listeners may find the level of detail—for example, a thorough cataloging of how and where different trees grow on Heinrich's property—overwhelming. Narrator Rick Adamson is a good match for the material. His voice manages to imbue both authority and joy regarding the subject matter.
VERDICT Recommended for collections with strengths in biology or natural science. ["This compelling collection will appeal to those interested in natural history or the environment of northern New England": LJ 3/15/18 review of the Houghton Harcourt hc.]
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