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The Animal Dialogues - Uncommon Encounters in the Wild by Craig Childs Books in Review
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The Animal Dialogues - Uncommon Encounters in the Wild
by Craig Childs
Back Bay Books
ISBN 978-0-316-06647-1
Published March 2009 - Paperback - 336 pages - $14.99

I read and loved The Way Out by Craig Childs, and from the first story in this book, on the Great Blue Heron, I was hooked.  I felt connected (see my heron photos).  Childs's exquisite descriptions of the wild are easily visualized, and as one progresses through his book, you come to imagine every nuance, crack, twitter, and thump he's telling us about.  Like, "Across the river from our camp, the grizzly took a seat.  It found a cluster of birch trees, and it rolled onto its rear like a very large person sitting to tell a story". - isn't that beautiful?  Or, describing a porcupine, "It looks like a mop, a bundle of ponderosa pine needles, a mobile hairstyle".  He relates his encounters with a mountain lion, a jaguar, a Bald Eagle, ravens (fascinating story), mountain goats, a peregrine falcon, the squid, and a whole lot more.  Childs's ability to tell his stories so eloquently is enviable, as how and what he writes puts the reader right there with him, reliving his experiences in the comfort and safety of our homes.  His adventures are numerous, diverse, and challenging.  These writings are rather like subtle lessons in biology, topography, geography, and zoology, and you'll come away knowing much more about animals and the earth than before.  Not a bad thing at all.
Conclusion - An enthralling page-turner and gloriously enriching.  A book I wish everyone would read, love, and appreciate.  We're part of Nature.
Please read my review of another Childs book, The Way Out.

book cover

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