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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Silent Spring Revisited - a must read title
I've been familiar with some of Conor Mark Jameson's writing in Birds Magazine, BBC Wildlife Magazine and the Guardian and was really looking forward to reading this.

I wasn't disappointed. The book - while covering some important stuff - is totally accessible and a delight to read.

Personal and poignant moments are combined with the history of...
Published on 15 May 2012 by Sam Brown 234

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Not what the title suggests
The title of this book, pegged to the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of Rachel Carson's `Silent Spring' (published in 1962), is somewhat misleading. Whereas Carson's original was a ground-breaking and very influential critique of the rapid increase in the use of pesticides in the US, a development that appeared to be killing millions of birds and other wildlife,...
Published 1 month ago by Phil O'Sofa


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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Silent Spring Revisited - a must read title, 15 May 2012
This review is from: Silent Spring Revisited (Hardcover)
I've been familiar with some of Conor Mark Jameson's writing in Birds Magazine, BBC Wildlife Magazine and the Guardian and was really looking forward to reading this.

I wasn't disappointed. The book - while covering some important stuff - is totally accessible and a delight to read.

Personal and poignant moments are combined with the history of Rachel Carson's work and the importance of her legacy today. At times moving, at times lyrical, this book combines serious fact and comment with some unique insights that reveal Jameson's genuine passion for our planet and the wildlife that walks upon or flies above it.

The accessibility and compelling nature of this book has inspired me to find out more about the history of environmentalism and how it affects the landscape we have now.

Highly recommended - for anyone who just loves a good read, as well natural history writing fans, bird and wildlife lovers, countryside aficionados and conservationists.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Silent Surprise, 16 May 2012
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This review is from: Silent Spring Revisited (Hardcover)
So, not having read a book for pleasure in an age I wasn't expecting to turn this book around in a short space of time - but that's what happened. This book is a great read - it does so many things without you really noticing - it engages, entertains, informs and even inspires - encourages you to lift your head from the pages and take a second to think about your surroundings. It's not pompous or pious about the environment, but reminds you of your place in a greater story.
The author's voice is writ large over this book and provides much of the central colour. His passion for the subject matter is clear, but communicated in a way that is inclusive. I think this book is a good read for all - but will be particularly appreciated by those with an interest in nature - whether walker, gardener, traveller or fully fledged conservationist.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Factual, fascinating and frightening, 15 Feb 2013
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Compelling reading for anyone who has a concern about the future of life on earth. Not being a bird watcher, I haven't followed the specific loses of birds but to me the general disappearance of our wildlife has been unmissable. This book very gently relieves the current health of nature, not only in the UK but across the interconnected world. Using birds as a barometer it suggests realistic changes to come; offering possible reasons for declines, highlighting hurdles for improvements; yet, rightfully, never losing a sense of hope.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An important well researched book., 17 Dec 2012
This review is from: Silent Spring Revisited (Hardcover)
This well researched book gives a detailed history of conservation over the last half century, including the author's own research into our lost birds. Yet it is much more than an account. It is brought to vivid life by the inspiring and sometimes poignant personal stories of the author who has spent his life championing birds nationally and internationally. The book is beautifully written with memorable descriptions: a dipper's song carried down a river; a frozen bird under a bridge; the bleak landscapes and destroyed hedgerows of East Anglia, which contrast sharply with the hedgerows of the author's neighbourhood, which as a parish councillor, he and other hedge laying volunteers have laid themselves. In my opinion Silent Spring Revisted is an important, well written book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great read - or just dip in., 30 Dec 2012
By 
Glenribbeen "Glenribbeen" (Glenribbeen Eco Lodge, Lismore) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Silent Spring Revisited (Hardcover)
Great to read in one fell swoop - or just dip in and out as the passion finds you. Great book to use for quotations for college project.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not the usual green polemic, 11 Jun 2012
By 
A. Maslen (Salisbury, Wiltshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Silent Spring Revisited (Hardcover)
First of all, full disclosure: the author is a client of mine. Having said that, no special pleading or log-rolling is needed for this book.

It's an unusual book in that it takes a light touch to a heavy subject: species extinction, or the threat of it. Taking as his starting point Rachel Carson's seminal work, 'Silent Spring', Conor leads us on a chronological world tour of the threats facing the world's birds, coupled always with a ray of hope as he shows us how small steps - and occasional big ones - can make a real difference.

Starting in the early sixties, he weaves a skillful and engrossing tale mixing observation, autobiography, travel writing, research and history that takes a hold of you slowly, but surely, and then never lets up until the closing pages that bring us right up to date in 2012 (a publishing marvel in itself).

His writing blends precision (always the first goal of any serious writer) with vivid description and evocative vignettes of life amongst birds from Scotland through New Zealand and the Amazon to his current home in rural Bedfordshire.

I am about as averagely green as the next man, ie not much, but I notice birds more now thanks to Conor's prose and clear passion for his subject.

As an aside, the book itself is rather beautifully produced with a great front cover and spare pencil illustrations at the start of each chapter.

If you are even vaguely interested in birds, "the environment" or how an individual (even one not working for the RSPB) can make a difference, read this book.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A delight to read, 8 Jun 2012
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This review is from: Silent Spring Revisited (Hardcover)
This book is excellent. Apart from being very interesting and easy to read it also draws together lots of strands, particularly historical ones. `How we came to be where we are' is going to be an invaluable lesson to those who want/need to plan where to go next. There are also some echoes of childhood in Lowland Scotland which (in my opinion) hit the spot.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Not what the title suggests, 29 July 2014
The title of this book, pegged to the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of Rachel Carson's `Silent Spring' (published in 1962), is somewhat misleading. Whereas Carson's original was a ground-breaking and very influential critique of the rapid increase in the use of pesticides in the US, a development that appeared to be killing millions of birds and other wildlife, this book reads much more like a recent history of the RSPB (Royal Society for the Protection of Birds), complete with the author's observations on life in Britain over the last half-century, and in particular lots of anecdotes based on his obvious love of birds.

Nothing wrong with any of that, perhaps, and the book is well written for the most part and a pleasant enough read, but it is of limited appeal and really has little in common with Silent Spring, other than the environmental message. If the title had been more along the lines of, say, `A recent history of nature conservation in the UK', then the reader would have a better understanding of what to expect (though it probably wouldn't sell so many books!)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Multidimensional Brief History of..., 2 Feb 2014
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This book reads as a timeline from the 1960s through to 2012, and is a very useful overview of the major events and evolution of the environmental movement - primarily bird conservation, and primarily the work of the RSPB in the UK (and later, other places).

There's a lot of information to take in (well it was an ambitious task to write), with many facts, details of research, questions and ideas, but at times it does feel like reading a list - with some details hurried over and others seeming irrelevant or missed-out, in what is a very rapid run-down and condensing of more than 50 years of stuff. It does also feel at times like a hopeless, depressing record of one oil spill after another..... but, that is what happened/is happening, and small bits of hope are restored in other places. It focuses heavily on the RSPB and it's achievements (fair enough as the author works for them), and as the author says in the beginning - it is written from a very personal standpoint. However, it does well to bring-in news headlines, events in popular culture, and in generally trying to convey the wider political atmosphere and context of each year - all very important in trying to understand The Bigger Picture.

What really makes this book for me, is that the "story" is also punctuated with autobiographical accounts and memories; the author growing up, and embarking through a life and career shaped and enriched by birds. This personal dimension adds poignancy, humour, insight and comment. It makes it a very human story, which I wasn't necessarily expecting from the cover/other reviews.

Overall an enjoyable, very readable and personable writing style, and a valuable insight into the decades which I am too young to know personally. The running themes and links back to the starting point of Rachel Carson's "Silent Spring", as well as J.A. Baker's "The Peregrine" and other highlighted poetry and prose give it a well thought-out and creative flair. There's a lot going on in this book, and on lots of different levels!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you love Nature, then you will love this book, 1 May 2013
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Silent Spring is a great read, as someone who appreciates nature this book explains in an easy manner how that nature has been under threat from mankind and how the good folk at the RSPB and its members along with other conservation charities have been working hard to help save and protect it.
Like Conor, I`m a child of the late sixties and his recounting of key events both personal and public over the last 40 years was a happy trip down memory lane.
Having enjoyed Silent Spring revisited I will certainly be reading Conor`s other book - Looking for the Goshawk.
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Silent Spring Revisited
Silent Spring Revisited by Conor Mark Jameson (Hardcover - 10 May 2012)
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