**WINNER OF THE EAST ANGLIAN BOOK AWARDS 2019**
Discover this beautiful, revelatory country diary from one of the best nature writers in Britain.
For seventeen years, as part of his daily writerly routine, the author and naturalist Mark Cocker has taken a two-mile walk down to the river from his cottage on the edge of the Norfolk Broads National Park. Over the course of those 10,000 daily paces he has learnt the art of patience to observe a butterfly, a bird, flower, bee, deer, otter or fly and to take pleasure in all the other inhabitants of his parish, no matter how seemingly insignificant.
In turn, these encounters became literary epiphanies that are now a widely celebrated part of his work. In A Claxton Diary he has gathered some of the finest short essays that he has ever written on wildlife. They range over almost everything he can see, touch or smell, from the minute to the cosmic, from a strange micromoth called yellow-barred longhorn to that fiercest of winter storms the ‘Beast from the East’.
From the marvellous to the macabre, Cocker tries to capture nature without flinching and in its entirety. Above all he reminds us that we are all just members of one miraculous family, fashioned from sunlight and the dust from old stars.
‘Exquisite essential reading’ BBC Wildlife
‘A spellbinding nature diary that’s up there with the greatest’ Mail on Sunday
"A spellbinding nature diary that’s up there with the greatest… [Cocker] regularly follows up a beady description with a wild, glorious overview, followed by an astonishing fact or two… Hurrah for Mark Cocker! *****"
"Being a naturalist, Cocker’s great strength is in the breadth of his senses: his essays seem to cover almost everything he has seen, heard or smelled in the land around his home. He writes clearly, and with a style that has a ring of poetry about it without being pretentious or precious… Spending time with his acutely observant essays will convince many readers that the Great Barrier Reef and vast jungles of Africa can be understood best only by first understanding the startling drama, diversity and complicated natural dynamics of a humble corner of Britain."
"If you’ve never read Mark Cocker, then you must. His style is sharp, selfless, and wonderfully evocative, his knowledge deep and wide-ranging but lightly borne, his curiosity joyful and infectious."
"If you can’t get out to enjoy the spring weather, immerse yourself in the natural world with Mark Cocker… his writing transports you there. "
"If you already know Mark Cocker’s work, you’ll need no persuading to buy this – if you don’t, treat yourself to a very fine collection of nature essays."