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  • Barbara Copperthwaite

GIVEAWAY! Meadowland by John Lewis-Stempel


Some writing is so beautiful that I am gripped with an urge to read sections out loud, just so that I can hear the jewel-like words as well as see them, somehow maximizing the pleasure and sharing the joy with others. This is one such book. Vividly described, and wonderfully written, Meadowland gives a unique and intimate account of an English meadow’s life from January to December.

John Lewis-Stempel’s passionate love for his land comes through as he describes the passage of the seasons from cowslips in spring to the hay-cutting of summer and grazing in autumn. Through his affinity with nature we get to know the badger clan, the fox family, the rabbit warren, the skylark brood and the curlew pair, among others. We fall in love ourselves with the rustling grasses and winter-rattling leaves.

This is no flowery, romanticised ode to nature though, it is steeped in the harsh realities of life and death in the wild – and is all the more evocative and touching for it. This is a book to fall in love with and read again and again and again.


Love the sound of this book? You could win it and others in a giveaway running on

The books  were all shortlisted for the Thwaites Wainwright Prize 2015, an annual award that showcases the best books in UK nature and travel writing. Celebrating the legacy of renowned British nature writer Alfred Wainwright, the prize reflects his core values of inspiring people to explore the outdoors, whilst engendering a love of landscape and respect for nature.

The winner this year was Meadowland, by John Lewis-Stempel.


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