Monday, 20 May 2013

Shalee lhaih 2013: Shiaghtin 20

Jerrey feedoo hiaghtin ny Shallee Lhaih. Shoh ny lhiah mee yn çhiaghtin shoh chaie:

The Armchair Naturalist (Johnson P. Johnson)

Lioar feer vie ren mish y aachooinaghtyn er y ghraih aym er najooraghys. T'eh screeuit dy mie ass towse, lane aitt meein as ynseydaght imlagh. Cha nel Johnson insh leaght dhyt, agh t'eh soilshaghey cooishyn as cur beggan fys dy baghtal as caarjoil. Ta ny caslyssyn jesh as fondagh, as t'eh maylartey bun-chooishyn nish as reesht do nagh gaillee uss anaase. Lioar yindyssagh da sleih aegey as aasit. Share dhyt lhaih duillag ny ghaa y cheayrt; cha nel lheid ny lioar cooie dhyt roie ny trooid. Cheau mee queig meeghyn taitnyssagh lhee.

Corvus: a life with birds (Esther Woolfson)

Bea-skeeal ben as ny h-ushagyn t'ee er gummal maroo. Ta'n lioar caghlaa eddyr skeealyn er cliaghtaghyn ny h-ushagyn, beggan bea-skeeal, as smooinaghtyn er ushagyn, "ushagys", deiney, bea and ny kianglaghyn t'eddyr ocsyn. Ta bea-oaylleeaght ayns shen, chammah's fallsoonys. Ghow mee soylley jeh, agh shegin dou gra dy row eh ro-liauyr er lhiam, as dennee mee nagh row ee lane shickyr er cree ny lioar, agh foddee dy screeu ish ny va foee as cha nel eh cooie dooys! Smooinee dy vel ee daa wheesh ny smoo na lioaryn Gerald Durrell (agh lhisin goaill rish nagh nee skeealeenyn t'ayns shoh). Veagh ee ny share as laue reagheyder elley currit 'sy chooish, foddee, dys keyllaghey ee dy meein. T'ee mie dy liooar as anaasoil gyn ourys, agh nel mian aym ee y chur da carrey erbee çhelleeragh.

The end of week twenty of the Reading Project. Here's what I've read this week:

The Armchair Naturalist (Johnson P. Johnson)

A great book that reminded me of my interest in natural history. It's written very well, full of mild humour and quiet instruction. Johnson doesn't lecture, but he illustrates and explains clearly and amicably. The art is pleasant and very skillful, and he alternates topics fairly well to avoid you losing interesting. A fine book for readers of any age. Best for patchwork reading, not something to plunge through (it's taken me five months).

Corvus: a life with birds (Esther Woolfson)

A mixture of autobiography, bird anecdotes, as musings on birds, birdhood, humanity and its opinions of birds, life, and the interactions between them all. There's a fair dose of biology in there, and a dash of philosophy. I enjoyed this book, but I have to say at times I found it long-winded and skimmed over some of the longer dryer passages (especially things I already knew), or the semi-lyrical prose sections that sometimes crop up. I felt like Woolfson didn't have a firm vision for the core of this book - although possibly it's exactly what she wanted to write and that happens to be too mixed for my taste. At times I got the feeling that the hand of an(other?) editor would have been a boon, gently thinning out the essence of the book. It's twice the size of any Gerald Durrell book in my collection, for example; though in fairness there's a difference in style. Decent, and genuinely interesting, but not something I feel the immediate urge to press on anyone.

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