Gerald Durrell: The Authorised Biography by Douglas Botting
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
A thoroughly engaging read; a thick volume that left me sorry it ever had to end – as I could say of Durrell's life too.
I fell in love long ago with the child Gerald and his family, as written of by his adult self in 'My Family and Other Animals' and its sequels. Also I saw some of his TV programs about wildlife conservation. He himself was a very engaging writer, a beautiful wrier in fact, and a man with an admirable mission in life – indeed, a huge vision – which he did his best to realise, and a very good best it was.
Botting, a fellow naturalist, does him absolute justice with his own writing, and also includes long extracts from Gerald's writings – largely his letters and diaries.
I read it as an ebook – which I prefer – text only. I'm sure any illustrations would have been interesting, but photos of the main characters and creatures can be found online. The wonderful words are the thing, and the wonderful story in all its ups and downs. It was a life well lived, albeit unconventionally. I can't recommend the book highly enough.
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Wednesday, December 20, 2017
Sunday, December 03, 2017
The fairies need Tim's help. Their home in the old-growth forest is in danger of being logged for timber. Can Tim convince his father, the manager of a sawmill, to stop old-growth logging in the forest, and save the fairies? But Tim also needs the fairies' help. He desperately wants his father and classmates to believe his story about Jorell being a real-life fairy. Can Jorell help Tim be believed?
Andrew's environmental story for children, also loved by adult readers, has just become an e-book. It is something he wanted to do with JORELL, shortly before he died, but we ran out of time. I'm glad to finally make it happen.
I tell people that the story is fiction but at least two of the fairies (Jorell herself, and a being called Lady Fairy) are real.
I have vivid memories of Andrew, when we lived under a local mountain called The Pinnacle, going outside to sit under a particular tree to meditate, tune in, and connect with the nature spirits (fairies). Then he would come back inside, sit at his computer and the words would pour.
The cover artist, Tom Giffin, suggested a different cover design from the paperback. My favourite book designers, Delaina and Kristin of Content X Design, worked with that suggestion to realise it professionally.
I published it on Smashwords which makes it available in all the various ebook formats.
It's just in time for Christmas, and a steal at $2.99 USD!