Diary of a Young Naturalist, by Dara McAnulty

Staff Pick

At sixteen an internationally recognized wildlife activist, McAnulty is the Northern Irish counterpart of Sweden’s Greta Thunberg. He's also like her in being on the spectrum, and his Diary is an often wrenching account of the anguish he suffers trying to navigate the noise of confusing social demands andhis schoolmates' bullying. But the sensitivity that makes ordinary life painful makes nature a place of solace and wonder. McAnulty experiences the wild thoroughly and deeply—studying a centuries’ old great oak, he feels “our rhythms intertwine”—and evokes its sounds, sights, and smells in language as lyrical as it is scientifically precise; McAnulty is an expert in both the habits of butterflies, otters, and birds ranging from ravens to corncrakes and hen harriers (he was smitten with raptors at age six), and the folklore associated with them. But is this enough to raise awareness of our essential bonds to nature and stop the relentless “growing for growth” that has hurt so many of the creatures McAnulty loves? Is “noticing an act of rebellion, a resistance?” McAnulty’s passion and eloquence—his ability to show us, and make us care about, how “a wall is an entire world to an insect,” for instance—makes the answer a resounding “yes.”


Diary of a Young Naturalist Cover Image
ISBN: 9781571311801
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Milkweed Editions - June 8th, 2021