Books For Nature Lovers

22I recently had a request from a lovely reader to share my favourite nature books. I thought this a smashing idea, so here are five of my most-read books.

Keeping A Nature Journal by Claire Walker Leslie & Charles E. Roth

My all-time favourite book. This is the book that really got me on my way with nature study. There is so much information packed into this book, you can keep dipping in, year after year. Having this book is the closest you can get to a day spent in the field with Leslie, coming along side you and encouraging you in your studies.

A Trail Through The Leaves by Hannah Hinchman

Another great journaling book, without quite the same nature focus as Leslie’s book. Henchman takes a broader look at daily journaling, which for her, as a naturalist, is the natural world around her. This book will bring out the naturalist in all of us.

Nature Anatomy. The Curious Parts and Pieces of the Natural World by Julia Rothman

A beautiful, American book. As an English reader, I still really enjoy flipping through this book, enjoying Rothman’s whimsical illustrations. An engaging read, you will come away wanting to learn more.

The Amateur Naturalist by Gerald Durrell

A classic on English natural history. This is also a very practical book, It includes information on identifying tracks, preserving a wildlife area, collecting shells, taking lichen scratchings, making a cast of a footprint and caring for wounded birds. Really engaging, Durrell’s passion shines through.

The Art of Field Sketching by Claire Walker Leslie

You really cannot go wrong with books by Leslie. A passionate artist and naturalist, this particular book is great for getting started with field sketching. Packed with techniques, examples, and exercises, this book will help you to develop your skills.

5 thoughts on “Books For Nature Lovers

  1. Hello Lynn

    Thank you so much for this, wonderful. I think I shall spend my money on keeping a nature journal it might stretch to the art of field sketching too! I will see if the other two are in the library for the moment.

    I already own the amateur naturalist but the updated one by Nick Baker. It has a lovely introduction by Lee Durrell who is full of praise for the updated work. The book is full of ideas for young and old, it also contains stories and cautionary tales. I actually found myself laughing in places which I was not expecting! It is not in the least bit dry. I am hoping to set up an indoor pond for the children this year……. Oh who am I kidding its for me really, just need to find space.

    I am hoping to read a book a month this year, I struggle with finding time as I am a sucker for trawling the internet for the many beautiful learning resources. This is our third year homeschooling, so I think time to consolidate rather than experiment with what we do.

    Any idea where to get a cheap fish tank? The children also want to make a corner of the garden their own wildlife play area, complete with hide! So if it stops raining too that would be great!

    Best wishes


    1. Glad to be of help, Jenny. You cannot go wrong with Clarie Walker Leslie; the is so very inspirational!
      Try The Range for a cheap fish tank. What a great idea 🙂 Keep me posted on how you get on. A hide in the garden is such a fantastic idea…lets hope things dry up soon. Our garden is turning into a mud bath.

      1. Oh yes, I will look in the range, so many lovely things in there. Apparently I spend too long in there!

        I think the garden will be a long project, the area earmarked is currently a bit overgrown and the children have big plans, basically if they see something wild they want it to go in! Will keep you posted. I am quite excited too I feel ready to make over the garden.

        Best wishes


  2. I just have to add a new find of mine that I love! It is another by Clare Walker Leslie called The Curious Nature Guide: Explore the Natural Wonders All Around You. I got it from the library first, but fell in love with it and bought my own. It was just published 2015 and is basically about “rediscovering wonder” and “reconnecting with nature.” I have needed something to encourage me to ‘keep doing nature study’ though I instituted it in our homeschool back in 1995 (by plopping a homegrown tomato onto a post and sitting in the garden with the children to draw it, lol.) I am down to my last child of 6 that I am doing nature study with and she has told me that she really does not care for it anymore…ack! This is my bug girl who, up until last fall, brought me all sorts of bugs, leaves, etc. everyday! Sigh. She is 11 and changing and, well, I am hoping by my example she will want to take it up again.;). (Any suggestions welcome!)

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