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The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot Paperback – 30 May 2013
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A wonderful book: Macfarlane has a rare physical intelligence, and his writing affords total immersion in place, elements and the passage of time -- Antony Gormley A naturalist who can unfurl a sentence with the breathless ease of a master angler, a writer whose ideas and reach far transcend the physical region he explores The New York Times Book Review [Mountains of the Mind is] a distinguished book that jolted my heart. Adventurous, passionate, intensely romantic ... fizzes with insights -- Roger Deakin A new naturalist to set beside the classics in our literature Evening Standard --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
Robert Macfarlane is the author of Mountains of the Mind, The Wild Places, The Old Ways and Landmarks. Mountains of the Mind won the Guardian First Book Award and the Somerset Maugham Award and The Wild Places won the Boardman-Tasker Award. Both books have been adapted for television by the BBC. He is a Fellow of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and writes on environmentalism, literature and travel for publications including the Guardian, the Sunday Times and The New York Times. He is currently working on an illustrated children's book about the natural world in collaboration with illustrator Jackie Morris.
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Top Customer Reviews
(This is how he writes - with a few obscure languages thrown in). Loved chapter one. Wore me out enroute after that. I don't even know anyone I could give this book to, without worrying it'll do their head in too.
The language Macfarlane uses is beautiful, and the ideas expressed vary from simple and direct to quite complex and abstract. Having done some long walks (multiple days on a long trail), I recognise the way my own thinking loops between these modes when a certain amount of time has elapsed at a walker's pace: thinking of the elements and being warm or cold, or being thirsty, or some other practicality, but also being aware of the old pack-horse bridge, an ancient group of standing stones, other human landmarks from times past, the glory of a view or the patterns in the sky, a glimpse of rare wildlife or a carpet of wildflowers, and perhaps sensing that you've just shared the inspiration for a poet, writer or artist who's been here before. So as well as being so well-written, the words resonate and ring true.
Highly recommended for yourself but also a nice book to buy someone as a gift, as it's one to treasure.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I purchased this because it looked like an interesting cross between a travel book and a piece of literature. It is. Read morePublished 16 days ago by bob turnip
It could of been a great book but the writing is too often cloying and pretentious and some of the metaphors are borderline ridiculous. Read morePublished 29 days ago by H
I should be loving this book. I picked it up as a respite from supposedly heavier material. But what is presented as a study of old by-ways delves also into pagan practices which... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Ms H. M. Moorhouse
This is one of the most beautiful books I've ever read. Macfarlane is a master of words and descriptive language, of exploring words to give his text an unique quality and... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Leza H
By a long way not as good as Landmarks: in fact the whole was so fragmented and jagged that I gave up reading half-way. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Beszelek