The Peregrine

English language

Copied ISBN!

View on Inventaire

4 stars (11 reviews)

1 edition

A great use of descriptive language and appreciation of nature

3 stars

Not my usual fare for buying or reading, but worth a shot. I was pushed this way by filmmaker Werner Herzog, and I'm glad I picked it up. If you want to know more about attention to detail and how to render that in your writing and other work, this book is a good example of that. I mean, I felt like I was seeing these moments right there with the author the more the book went on, and you see his obsessive attention to detail regarding the Peregrine falcons and their prey, their lives, patterns, etc.

He doesn't give them cutesy names or anything, and if you're not familiar with British varieties of bird and small animal species, then definitely check out the introduction for a bit of help (otherwise you'll probably get lost). No, he's so into his observation that at times his use of the word "I" …

Becoming a hawk

5 stars

The Peregrine is unlike anything else that I have read. In the 1960s, JA Baker took his binoculars into the south England countryside and spent every day taking diary entries that carefully observed the behaviour of a small number of peregrines in the area. Wind, rain or snow, he went out and recorded what he saw.

By the end of the book, Baker's diary entries have started to read like those that might have been written by a peregrine itself. He becomes part hawk through spending so much time with the birds (and, although the book never really acknowledges it, you could argue that at least one of the peregrine tiercels has also become part human in this process). It is a deep book, brilliantly and passionately written, and as unique an experience as the written word can offer.

Review of 'The Peregrine' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

I've wanted to read this book for a while now, quite a few other nature books I've read have been inspired by this book, glad I gave it a go as it was a beautifully written book, almost poetic at times. Baker goes into great detail about the countryside, other animals and every aspect of the peregrines life. J. A. Baker was diagnosed as being very ill so he decided to dedicate his life to stalking these peregrines he had spotted. In the end he does start to go feral, at times when writing about the peregrine his says "we" a lot, like he has become a bird too. At times the book gets quite dark as he rants about the damage humans are doing. Here is one of my favourite lines from the book when describing humans.

"We are the killers. We stink of death. We carry it with …