Last of the Curlews
This fictionalised account of the migration of the last-ever Eskimo Curlew was a fixture of many birders’ lives as they grew up, as either this novel or the animation which was shown frequently on TV in the 1970s and 1980s.
The book largely avoids sentimentality, but only the stoniest of hearts could fail to be moved by the descriptions of the hardships of the lone bird’s last days, the privations of migration and the austere beauty of the landscapes it crosses. This classic of conservation fiction is now available as a reissued paperback, with a foreword and lengthy afterword for context.
• Last of the Curlews by Fred Bodsworth (Counterpoint, Berkeley, reprint 2011).
• 174 pages, 10 line drawings.
• ISBN 9781582437354. Pbk, £9.99.