As I have stated earlier, winter is not my best season. I am an outdoorsy woman, so I suppose it is not all that surprising that at the end of a cold, dark winter, I would find myself gravitating toward books relating to nature. I recently found myself reading three of these books very close together: The Beak of the Finch: A Story of Evolution in Our Time by Jonathan Weiner, Lab Girl by Hope Jahren, and The Lost Art of Reading Nature’s Signs: Use Outdoor Clues to Find Your Way, Predict the Weather, Locate Water, Track Animals-and Other Forgotten Skills. Each of these book was unique, but they seemed to play well together.
I am not sure how The Beak of the Finch hit my radar, but it did. When planning my books for the quarter, title came to the top of the list. So, I checked it out from the library and sat down to read it. Overall, I found it to be a very focused and detailed account of Finch species in the Galapagos. I did not find this book to be very engaging. Much more scientific than my usual fare. However, while I was reading this, Lab Girl became available on Overdrive. I began listening to this title when not reading the finch book. The two stories, one of birds and one of trees, interacted well together. Consuming them simultaneously, increased my enjoyment of each.
The Lost Art of Reading Nature’s Signs was an impulse pick up at the library. I frequently wonder about the generations who lived without our technology. Once upon a time, people actually had to pay attention to the natural world to assure they planted crops at the right time, in the right place, and they had to keep all of that knowledge available. I can just barely check the weather to put on appropriate clothing for the elements. Imagine my delight when reading about observing the clouds and noticing the shifting winds to help predict storms and changing weather patterns! There was a lifetime of knowledge in this book and I will not remember it all after a single reading. As I play and explore in the upcoming months, I will have an opportunity to experience some of the phenomena of this book and share it with my nieces.
All three books discuss evolution and how things fit and work together. By reading each of these, I have new knowledge and a greater appreciation of the nature around me. Each book also helped me to focus on different aspects of my surroundings to clue me in to what is happening.