Lakeland Book of the Year 2018, Bookends Prize for Art and Literature, WINNER. With its enchanting song, striking orange bill and endearing willingness to share our living space, the blackbird is one of our best-loved birds. But robins, swifts, goldfinches and blue tits captivate us equally and, in The Blackbird Diaries, Karen Lloyd shares her deep-rooted affection for British wildlife and issues a clarion call for the conservation of endangered habitats and species – most notably the curlew, Europe's largest wading bird. Over the four seasons, Karen intimately chronicles the drama and the joy, the perils and the pleasures of the natural world as it all unfolds in her garden and on her daily walks in the limestone hills and valleys of Cumbria's South Lakeland. What emerges is a celebration of landscapes that rarely feature in the existing canon of nature writing, and rare insights into the lives of the species that may be common but are remarkable creatures all.
«Sure to delight readers and fans of British wildlife… Like all good nature writing books, Lloyd's prose is to be savoured. Not raced through and devoured like the latest crime thriller, but to be absorbed, enjoyed and reflected upon.» Megan Shersby, BBC Countryfile magazine «A writer of rare talent… Lloyd quietly and unassumingly shares her observations of nature, drawing you into a world made rich with the company of birds. Nothing is beyond her eye – from wavering flocks of lapwing, or the mad arcs of swifts to the majesty of sea eagles, the evening sunlight caught crystalline in their eyes.» Miriam Darlington, BBC Wildlife «A charming and informative account… [Lloyd] has a keen eye and a quiet, understated way of describing her neighbourhood that I found captivating. It brought to mind the writing of … Kathleen Jamie … Keenly observed.» Katharine Norbury, Caught by the River