Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Book Review: Blokes and Birds Edited by Stephen Moss

Blokes and Birds is a collection of 40 birdwatching anecdotes from some of the United Kingdom's most active birdwatchers. Each anecdote is written by a different birdwatcher and accompanied by a short biography and photograph. A short and amusing introduction is written by the television presenter Bill Oddie.

Blokes and Birds is an amusing and light-hearted, short book which is the sort of thing that one can just pick up, read a short section and come back to later, and contains anecdotes which outline the obsessive nature of many birdwatchers. The tales of bird nerding include brushes with foreign police forces, hiring helicopters to arrive in time to see birds and arrest as suspected spies (something which appears remarkably common in birdwatching circles).

Whilst Blokes and Birds is really of interest only to birdwatchers and perhaps other wildlife enthusiasts, it is nicely written and the anecdotes within are interesting and fairly funny. This is the sort of book that makes an ideal small gift for birdwatchers and should not be mistaken for the more educational bird books that one usually comes across in book stores.

For what it is, Blokes and Birds is a nice, amusing little book that birdwatchers will enjoy reading and will reread time and time again ,and perhaps it will also amuse those that find it hard to understand the obsessive behaviour of birdwatchers.

Score: 7/10

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