- Hardcover: 110 pages
- Publisher: Profile Books; 1st edition (14 April 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1846684072
- ISBN-13: 978-1846684074
- Product Dimensions: 12 x 1.8 x 18.4 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 267,658 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Perfumier and the Stinkhorn Hardcover – 14 Apr 2011
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Advance praise for Weeds 
'This book will open your eyes to the significance, wonder and exasperation felt about weeds. I couldn't put the book down once I started reading. Mabey offers a diversity and richness of fact, fiction, philosophy and fun ... [he] opens our minds and hearts in unexpected ways to the fallacy of an implacable divide between people and nature... a great read.(Professor Stephen Hopper, Director, Kew Gardens)
short, wise and consisently delightful. (Johy Gray New Statesman 2011-04-25)
For a quick reminder of the beauty of birdsong or the heady scent of wild flowers, Mabey is the most thoughful and intimate of guides. (Claire Allfree Metro London 2011-04-13)
A delightful melange of scientific reflection and personal memories. (The Countryman 2011-05-03)
Inspiring meditations through the author's rich store of memoriesSee all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
At first I had a rather unfortunate sense of déjà vu as I read the first few pages of the book. Here were the Barn Owl, the Field behind Mabey's old home and John Clare - all subjects that he has covered elsewhere. But the book soon moves into fresher areas.
In essence this book is a plea for people to understand that romance, or at least flights of imagination, is a vital part of scientific discovery. Mayey makes the case for the idea that feeling and understanding are linked, and that while we can sail too close to the wind in terms of imposing our feelings and reactions on to the natural world, the very least we can do is admit that we can never really be impartial observers.
An excellent little book on a worthwhile subject.
Or, as Mabey himself puts it, in a more sensuous, impassioned and precise manner:
When I'm occasionally called a `Romantic naturalist' I wonder whether it's an accusation as much as a description : the meticulous observations of the natural scientist corrupted by my overheated imagination: objectivity compromised by my Romantic insistence on making feelings part of the equation...................nature isn't a machine to be dispassionately dissected, but a community of which we, the observers, are inextricably part. And that our feelings about that community are a perfectly proper subject for reflection, because they shape our relationship with it"
For me Mabey's writings on the natural world are as perfect as they can get. Analytical observation and objective research reins in the tendency to become febrile with ineffable meaning, and the sense of the numinous ever present prevents a dissection which kills the essence it is trying to understand.
In this short and rich book, he examines the natural world through the five senses and that `sixth sense' which he calls a sense of location or place, which may be linked to a felt sense of the earth's magnetic field.
Each chapter, with its marriage of fact and, not fancy, but feeling about fact presents rich food for thoughtful visioning.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Rarely do I read a book that gently opens up my mind and refreshes my thinking so profoundly. Definitely a book for readers who refuse to polarise their thinking into arts or... Read morePublished 24 days ago by A. Wollston
More pourings from the master of the highest order marrying the brain and the soul. He is a class actPublished on 3 May 2013 by JohnHB
This beautifully produced and illustrated collection of little essays is like a small appetiser for the real thing: Mabey's more substantial titles. Read morePublished on 10 April 2013 by Sentinel