Is there anything quite so exhilarating as swimming in wild water? This is a joyful swimming tour of Britain, a frog’s-eye view of the country’s best bathing holes – the rivers, rock pools, lakes, ponds, lochs and sea that define a watery island. Charming, funny, inspiring, an assertion of the native swimmer's right to roam, a celebration of the magic of water – this book will indeed make you want to strip off and leap in.
Selected from the book Waterlog by Roger Deakin
VINTAGE MINIS: GREAT MINDS. BIG IDEAS. LITTLE BOOKS.
A series of short books by the world’s greatest writers on the experiences that make us human
Also in the Vintage Minis series:
Eating by Nigella Lawson
Liberty by Virginia Woolf
Summer by Laurie Lee
Desire by Haruki Murakami
In 1996 Roger Deakin, the late, great nature writer, set out to swim through the British Isles. From the sea, from rock pools, from rivers and streams, tarns, lakes, lochs, ponds, lidos, swimming pools and spas, from fens, dykes, moats, aqueducts, waterfalls, flooded quarries, even canals, Deakin gains a fascinating perspective on modern Britain. Detained by water bailiffs in Winchester, intercepted in the Fowey estuary by coastguards, mistaken for a suicide on Camber sands, confronting the Corryvreckan whirlpool in the Hebrides, he discovers just how much of an outsider the native swimmer is to his landlocked, fully-dressed fellow citizens.
This is a personal journey, a bold assertion of the native swimmer's right to roam, and an unforgettable celebration of the magic of water.
Notes from Walnut Tree Farm is a collection of writing by Roger Deakin
For the last six years of his life, Roger Deakin kept notebooks in which he wrote his daily thoughts, impressions, feelings and observations about and around his home, Walnut Tree Farm. Collected here are the very best of these writings, capturing his extraordinary, restless curiosity about nature as well as his impressions of our changing world.
'Marvellous, wonderful, lovely, remarkable . . . to be read and reread and treasured' Elizabeth Jane Howard, Daily Mail
'Very funny, sharp-eyed. To look at the world through Deakin's eyes was to see somewhere that was more wonderful than it often appears' Sunday Telegraph
'Thoughtful and invigorating, full of humour, timeless . . . will take its place among the classics of Nature diaries . . . to be read alongside Frances Kilvert, Gilbert White, and Dorothy Wordsworth' Mail on Sunday
'Gentle, straight, honest, inquisitive, funny, melancholic' Spectator
'So busy and bustling with life' Observer
'A secular saint' The Times
Roger Deakin, who died in August 2006, shortly after completing the manuscript for Wildwood, was a writer, broadcaster and film-maker with a particular interest in nature and the environment.He lived for many years in Suffolk, where he swam regularly in his moat, in the river Waveney and in the sea, in between travelling widely through the landscapes he writes about in Wildwood. He is the author of Waterlog, Wildwood and Notes from Walnut Tree Farm.
Roger Deakin's Wildwood is a much loved classic of nature writing
Wildwood is about the element wood, as it exists in nature, in our souls, in our culture and our lives.
From the walnut tree at his Suffolk home, Roger Deakin embarks upon a quest that takes him through Britain, across Europe, to Central Asia and Australia, in search of what lies behind man's profound and enduring connection with wood and with trees.
Meeting woodlanders of all kinds, he lives in shacks and cabins, travels in search of the wild apple groves of Kazakhstan, goes coppicing in Suffolk, swims beneath the walnut trees of the Haut-Languedoc, and hunts bush plums with Aboriginal women in the outback.
Perfect for fans of Robert Macfarlane and Colin Tudge, Roger Deakin's unmatched exploration of our relationship with trees is autobiography, history, traveller's tale and incisive work in natural history. It will take you into the heart of the woods, where we go 'to grow, learn and change'
'Enthralling' Will Self, New Statesman
'Extraordinary . . . some of the finest naturalist writing for many years' Independent
'Masterful, fascinating, excellent' Guardian
'An excellent read - lyrical and literate and full of social and historical insights of all kinds' Colin Tudge, Financial Times
'Enchanting, very funny, every page carries a fascinating nugget. Should serve to make us appreciate more keenly all that we have here on earth . . . one of the greatest of all nature writers' Craig Brown, Mail on Sunday
'Breathtaking, vividly written . . . reading Wildwood is an elegiac experience' Sunday Times
Roger Deakin, who died in August 2006, shortly after completing the manuscript for Wildwood, was a writer, broadcaster and film-maker with a particular interest in nature and the environment. He lived for many years in Suffolk, where he swam regularly in his moat, in the river Waveney and in the sea, in between travelling widely through the landscapes he writes about in Wildwood. He is the author of Waterlog, Wildwood and Notes from Walnut Tree Farm.