10 books like That Quail, Robert

By Margaret Stanger,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like That Quail, Robert. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Why Peacocks?

By Sean Flynn,

Book cover of Why Peacocks?: An Unlikely Search for Meaning in the World's Most Magnificent Bird

GQ writer Flynn and his wife and two kids are minding their own business on their surburban Durham “faux farm” when a friend calls to ask if they want to add a peacock to the two chickens that wander their yard. They end up with three of the kaleidoscopic birds, and Flynn’s chronicle of the family’s first year with Carl, Ethel, and Mr. Pickle takes readers on an implausibly relatable journey from the bird’s place in history, culture, and myth through its evolutionary biology and breeding habits to its endangered status in the wild, offering sardonically hilarious and harrowingly poignant life lessons along the way.

Why Peacocks?

By Sean Flynn,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Why Peacocks? as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An acclaimed journalist seeks to understand the mysterious allure of peacocks-and in the process discovers unexpected and valuable life lessons.

When Sean Flynn's neighbor in North Carolina texted "Any chance you guys want a peacock? No kidding!" he stared bewilderedly at his phone. He had never considered whether he wanted a peacock. But as an award-winning magazine writer, this kind of mystery intrigued him. So he, his wife, and their two young sons became the owners of not one but three charming yet fickle birds: Carl, Ethel, and Mr. Pickle.

In Why Peacocks?, Flynn chronicles his hilarious and heartwarming first…


The Big Year

By Mark Obmascik,

Book cover of The Big Year: A Tale of Man, Nature, and Fowl Obsession

If you saw the disappointing-at-best 2011 film based very loosely on this book, don’t let it color your opinion; if you haven’t seen it, buy the book instead. It follows three birders as they traverse North America during 1998’s “big year,” an informal, self-reported 365-day competition in which bird-spotting junkies chase down as many species as they can. It’s an engrossing peek into a fascinating, quirky subculture that will sweep you along on an irresistible armchair roadtrip-with-a-purpose.

The Big Year

By Mark Obmascik,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Big Year as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Each year, hundreds of people set out across North America determined to set a new record in a spectacularly competitive event. Is it tennis? Golf? Racing? Poker perhaps? No, it's bird-watching, and a contest known as the Big Year - a grand, gruelling, expensive (and occasionally vicious) 365-day marathon to identify the most species.
THE BIG YEAR is the rollicking chronicle of the 275,000-mile odyssey of three unlikely adventurers who take their bird-watching so seriously it nearly kills them. From Texas in pursuit of the Rufus-capped Warbler to British Columbia in search of Xantus' Hummingbird, these obsessive enthusiasts brave roasting…


The Thing with Feathers

By Noah Strycker,

Book cover of The Thing with Feathers: The Surprising Lives of Birds and What They Reveal about Being Human

Packing a huge amount of research onto every page, Strycker, who in his 2015 big year logged a record-setting 6,042 bird species, engagingly analyzes the biology and behavior of penguins, magpies, hummingbirds, albatrosses, and more to explore how the lives of birds are simultaneously incredibly alien to and indelibly intertwined with those of humans in activities and emotions as diverse as altruism, dancing, seduction, and fear. His insights, delivered with a light touch, may well change the worldview of those who think that humans are somehow more worthy than any other animal on the planet.

The Thing with Feathers

By Noah Strycker,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Thing with Feathers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"[Strycker] thinks like a biologist but writes like a poet." -- Wall Street Journal

An entertaining and profound look at the lives of birds, illuminating their surprising world—and deep connection with humanity.
 
Birds are highly intelligent animals, yet their intelligence is dramatically different from our own and has been little understood. As we learn more about the secrets of bird life, we are unlocking fascinating insights into memory, relationships, game theory, and the nature of intelligence itself.

The Thing with Feathers explores the astonishing homing abilities of pigeons, the good deeds of fairy-wrens, the influential flocking abilities of starlings, the…


Aloft

By Stephen Bodio,

Book cover of Aloft: A Meditation on Pigeons & Pigeon-Flying

Pigeons are the Rodney Dangerfield of birds. But these docile “rats with wings,” as they’re often called, have hidden depths, including a long and varied history with the human race, which domesticated them 10,000 years ago — around the same time as dogs. As a child, Bodio took up what would become a lifelong passion: training and racing homing pigeons, and this 1990 memoir-slash-natural history reveals why in practical and poetic detail. It’s a great companion to Andrew Blechman’s sweeping 2004 survey Pigeons: The Fascinating Saga of the World’s Most Revered and Reviled Bird. Together the two books say as much about the insular community of pigeon fanciers as they do about the pigeons themselves.

Aloft

By Stephen Bodio,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Aloft as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The humble pigeon is anything but "common" to those who know the true nature of these birds. This bird is so enamored by some that, for over six thousand years, people have devoted themselves to the art of pigeon flying and pigeon breeding. Across the world, from the cities of America to China, enthusiasts have lovingly nurtured their flocks, creating thousands of breeds from small to large, and admired their beauty in every shape and size: pigeons with crests and frills, those who fly and those who can't.

Stephen Bodio draws readers in with resounding prose and a captivating portrayal…


The Outermost House

By Henry Beston,

Book cover of The Outermost House: A Year of Life on the Great Beach of Cape Cod

I love Cape Cod and I was fortunate to live on the edge of the sea between 1997-2003. Skillfully written by one of America’s greatest writers of the natural habitat, it transports you to a place. It reminds me of what it felt like to live far out in Cape Cod on the North Atlantic at its furthest reach on the east coast of the United States. Living there for several years and spending time in nature with the sea, beach, dunes, and my bicycle, I learned to love its moods, wildlife, and great sense of mystery. I totally identified with this man’s extraordinary experience and how it was years ago. A wonderfully descriptive book that helps you experience with all your senses what it’s like to live next to the sea alone. 

The Outermost House

By Henry Beston,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked The Outermost House as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The seventy-fifth anniversary edition of the classic book about Cape Cod, "written with simplicity, sympathy, and beauty" (New York Herald Tribune)

A chronicle of a solitary year spent on a Cape Cod beach, The Outermost House has long been recognized as a classic of American nature writing. Henry Beston had originally planned to spend just two weeks in his seaside home, but was so possessed by the mysterious beauty of his surroundings that he found he "could not go."

Instead, he sat down to try and capture in words the wonders of the magical landscape he found himself in thrall…


Seating Arrangements

By Maggie Shipstead,

Book cover of Seating Arrangements

Seating Arrangements is a smart, summery romp of a read set on the fictional island of Waskeke off of New England. The novel takes place in the days building up to Winn Van Meter’s eldest daughter’s wedding and takes a satirical look at the habits of a certain social class – the drinking, clubbing, and ancient social conflicts. Like a frothy cocktail, it goes down easy and packs a wallop.

Seating Arrangements

By Maggie Shipstead,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Seating Arrangements as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The New York Times bestselling author of Great Circle

'Joyously good' DAILY MAIL

'A ferociously clever comedy of manners' GUARDIAN

'A wise, sophisticated and funny novel about family, fidelity, class and crisis' MARIE CLAIRE

'A well-observed, hilarious, yet moving novel' WOMAN & HOME

New York Times bestseller and winner of the 2012 Dylan Thomas Prize and 2012 L.A. Times First Novel Prize

The Van Meters have gathered at their family retreat on the New England island of Waskeke to celebrate the marriage of daughter Daphne to an impeccably appropriate young man. The weekend is full of lobster and champagne, salt…


The Paper Palace

By Miranda Cowley Heller,

Book cover of The Paper Palace

Every page of The Paper Palace is moving and evocative—the quintessential love triangle that had me torn between young, innocent love and mature, adult love. I’m a sucker for these tropes, so I sunk inside this story of then and now, shuffling through a range of emotions, just like the protagonist, Elle. That’s the best kind of book. When you feel alongside the characters. And the secret longing kept me turning pages until the climactic, tender ending. And that ending. It will keep you guessing. And discussing. And thinking about it. I still think about it.  

The Paper Palace

By Miranda Cowley Heller,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Paper Palace as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

REESE'S BOOK CLUB PICK

INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

OVER 1 MILLION COPIES SOLD WORLDWIDE

THE PAPER PALACE IS:

“Filled with secrets, love, lies and a summer beach house. What more could you ask?”—Parade

“A deeply emotional love story…the unraveling of secrets, lies and a very complex love triangle.” —Reese Witherspoon (Reese’s Book Club July ’21 Pick)

"Nail-biting." —Town & Country

“A magnificent page-turner.” —Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney, New York Times bestselling author

“[An] irresistible placement of a complicated family in a bewitching place.” —The New York Times

A story of summer, secrets, love, and lies: in the course of…


Bound

By Sally Cabot Gunning,

Book cover of Bound

Bound is set in the years prior to the American Revolution, and highlights the difficulties faced by girls and women indentured servants. Alice and her family set out for America from England, but when her mother and brothers die during the voyage, Alice’s father decides he cannot keep her and sells her as an indentured servant upon reaching Boston. Alice should have had a middle-class upbringing, but instead, she becomes chattel. The scenes of abuse in this book are stark, but it helps to shed light on the sufferings of the disenfranchised and the helpless. Alice’s determination will inspire.

Bound

By Sally Cabot Gunning,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Bound as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An indentured servant finds herself bound by law, society, and her own heart in this novel set in colonial Cape Cod from the author of acclaimed The Widow’s War.

Indentured servant Alice Cole barely remembers when she was not “bound”, first to the Morton family, then to their daughter Nabby—her companion since childhood—when she wed. But Nabby’s new marriage is not happy, and when Alice finds herself torn between her new master and her old friend, she runs away to Boston. There she meets a sympathetic widow named Lyddie Berry and her lawyer companion, Eben Freeman. Impulsively stowing away on…


Wild Game

By Adrienne Brodeur,

Book cover of Wild Game: My Mother, Her Secret, and Me

I read Wild Game in a weekend—and that’s unusual for me, but I just couldn’t put the book down. Brodeur brought me into a world of treachery, lies, and mother-daughter entanglement that I found absolutely compelling. The mother in this book, Malabar, is a larger-than-life character whose willingness to sacrifice her daughter’s well-being for her own ends was horrifying and believable. I rooted for the daughter all the way through this beautifully crafted book, but it was the mother I found unforgettable.

Wild Game

By Adrienne Brodeur,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Wild Game as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A NATIONAL BESTSELLER. A daughter’s tale of living in the thrall of her magnetic, complicated mother, and the chilling consequences of her complicity.

NAMED A BEST FALL BOOK BY People * Refinery29 * Entertainment Weekly * BuzzFeed * NPR’s On Point * Town & Country * Real Simple * New York Post * Palm Beach Post * Toronto Star * Orange Country Register * Bustle * Bookish * BookPage * Kirkus* BBC Culture* Debutiful

On a hot July night on Cape Cod when Adrienne was fourteen, her mother, Malabar, woke her at midnight with five simple words that would set…


Upstream

By Mary Oliver,

Book cover of Upstream: Selected Essays

Mary Oliver, as a poet and an essayist, writes with a lyric sword. Upstream is a collection of essays that reflect her willingness to lose herself in the mysteries and intricacies of the natural world. In this work, Oliver contemplates the joy of her work, her passionate eye for observation, her ability and responsibility to write and think about the flora and fauna, the flowers, the grass, the water, the sky, and how they connect us to the natural world, to each other, and to ourselves.

The sheer power of her writing and command of language has always drawn me in, what pushes me as a person, a farmer, and a writer to give into the “stream” of our consciousness, to stop and observe, but to also keep moving forward with the power of words and my experience of the world around me.

Upstream

By Mary Oliver,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Upstream as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of O, The Oprah Magazine's Ten Best Books of the Year

The New York Times bestselling collection of essays from beloved poet, Mary Oliver.

"There's hardly a page in my copy of Upstream that isn't folded down or underlined and scribbled on, so charged is Oliver's language . . ." -Maureen Corrigan, NPR's Fresh Air

"Uniting essays from Oliver's previous books and elsewhere, this gem of a collection offers a compelling synthesis of the poet's thoughts on the natural, spiritual and artistic worlds . . ." -The New York Times

"In the beginning I was so young and such…


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