Wednesday, April 23, 2014

New Titles

 
1) Page, Jeremy. The Collector of Lost Things: A Novel. 2013. Pegasus Books. Hardbound: 373 pages. Price: $ 25.95 U.S.
PUBLISHER'S SUMMARY: The year is 1845 and young researcher Eliot Saxby is paid to go on an expedition to the Arctic in the hope of finding remains of the by-now-extinct Great Auk, a large flightless bird of mythical status.      Eliot joins a hunting ship, but the crew and the passengers are not what they seem. Caught in the web of relationships on board, Eliot struggles to understand the motivations of the sociopathic Captain Sykes; the silent First Mate, French; the flamboyant laudanum-addicted Bletchley; and most importantly of all, Bletchley's beautiful but strange 'cousin' Clara.
      As the ship moves further and further into the wilds of the Arctic Sea, Eliot clings to what he believes in, desperate to save Clara but irrevocably drawn back into a past that haunts him—and a present that confronts him with a myriad of dangers.
RECOMMENDATION: Birders might enjoy the Great Auk subplot.





2) Youth, Howard. Field Guide to the Natural World of Washington, D.C.. 2014. Johns Hopkins University Press. Paperback: 393 pages. Price: $24.95 U.S.
PUBLISHER'S SUMMARY: Nature awaits discovery at almost every turn in the complex ecosystem of Washington, D.C. In parks large and small, within the District's gardens, and on public streets, there is tremendous biodiversity. In Field Guide to the Natural World of Washington, D.C., naturalist Howard Youth takes us on an urban safari, describing the wild side of the nation's capital.
      Beyond the abundant wildlife that can be seen in every neighborhood, Washington boasts a large park network rich in natural wonders. A hike along the trails of Rock Creek Park, one of the country’s largest and oldest urban forests, quickly reveals white-tailed deer, eastern gray squirrels, and little brown bats. Mayapples, Virginia bluebells, and red mulberry trees are but a few of the treasures found growing at the National Arboretum. A stroll along the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers might reveal stealthy denizens such as bullfrogs, largemouth bass, and common snapping turtles. Detailed drawings by Carnegie artist Mark A. Klingler and photography by Robert E. Mumford, Jr., reveal the rich color and stunning beauty of the flora and fauna awaiting every D.C. naturalist.
      Whether seeking a secluded jog or an adventurous outing, residents and tourists alike will find this handsome guide indispensable for finding oases away from the noise of the city.
RECOMMENDATION: A good general introduction to the natural history of the region.

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