carracarmenchu's review

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emotional inspiring lighthearted medium-paced

4.25

This autobiography resembles the poetic, nature-worshipping style of Walt Whitman or Mary Oliver. However, there is a difference, the writer is a black person. And he is aware of that difference, of that feature he carries in a world of diversity:

My plumage is a kaleidoscopic rainbow of an eternal hope and the deepest blue of despair and darkness. All of these hues are me; I am, in the deepest sense, colored.

Yet he is also aware of his right to belong to that place, to that country, to those forests. The difference, the actual difference about his white fellows is that he has to claim that right, fight for his place in that society, in that country, in his field of study - ornithology/ bird watching, a field dominated by middle-aged, middle-class white men - and that legitimate claim is based on his connection to nature. And that is what Lanham narrates in this memoir: how that connection develops throughout his life.

At the same time, he discovers the marvels of the natural surroundings, the history of his family, and his skin; he learns about kindness and cruelty too, but exactly this connection with nature, this sense of wonder keeps him optimistic:

But the land, in spite of its history, still holds hope for making good on the promises we thought it could, especially if we can reconnect to it.

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camarua's review

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hopeful informative reflective relaxing medium-paced

5.0

ana_distracted's review against another edition

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5.0

This book is truly wonderful! It was like connecting with a friend I'd never met.

sehovde's review against another edition

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reflective slow-paced

4.5

madzzie's review against another edition

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informative slow-paced

2.0

kayleighs_reading_corner's review

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emotional informative reflective slow-paced

2.5

paulap's review

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informative medium-paced

2.5

This was an interesting book regarding the author life as an ornithologist, and how it was difficult to be a black man in that environment where there is hardly any. That was interesting, although it was less about the nature than the memoir side. There was a detail that bothered me, when justifying his love for hunting, arguing that vegetarians are not that good because the soja that they probably consume has caused destruction of the land as well. Even though that is true, he completely ignores the fact that most soja is used to feed animals for meet, and although being vegetarian does not eliminate the damage, it highly reduces. That might be a detail, but made me question his thoroughness on everything else.

hpepperstone's review against another edition

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adventurous emotional hopeful inspiring reflective medium-paced

4.0

julied's review

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emotional hopeful informative inspiring reflective medium-paced

5.0


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veronicap's review against another edition

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hopeful informative inspiring reflective relaxing slow-paced

4.25