Reader’s Lounge

by Suzanne Stevens

Few things are as perfect as the union of nature and literature. Whether you are looking for a field guide, personal reflection, eye candy or captivating fiction, the library shelves are stocked with plenty of options. As the sky turns ever more blue and the earth offers us a gamut of emerging green hues, strap on your hiking boots and get outside to enjoy the onset of nature’s awakening—and don’t forget to grab a book!

Peterson Field Guide to Birds of Eastern and Central North American

by Roger Tory Peterson

Most serious birdwatchers acknowledge Peterson’s guides as the most thorough and accessible on the market, complete with stunning lifelike illustrations that show all of the bird’s key field marks. Beginners will find the Peterson Identification System helpful as they learn to distinguish certain species. Grab a guide, a friend and a pair of binoculars and head into the woods for an afternoon of birding.

Feather Brained: My Bumbling Quest to Become a Birder and Find a Rare Bird on My Own

by Bob Tarte

Lowell author Bob Tarte has written a highly amusing glimpse into his experience as an observer of life in the wild. For most of his life, Tarte maintained an apathetic view of nature. That is, until a chance sighting of a dazzling rose-breasted grosbeak awakens in him an insatiable fascination with birds. He takes up bird watching, a hobby that takes him across the Midwest on a quest to set his eyes on rare, coveted species and finds him among a colorful cast of fellow birders from all over the country.

The Signature of All Things

by Elizabeth Gilbert

Spanning much of the 18th and 19th centuries, this sweeping work of fiction follows the fortunes of the Whittakers, a family of botanical explorers led by the enterprising Henry Whittaker, a poor-born Englishman who makes his fortune in the South American quinine trade and quickly becomes the richest man in the New World. His daughter Alma becomes a botanist of considerable gifts. She is brilliant and voracious, driven by an unquenchable sense of wonder and a desperate need to understand the hidden mechanism behind all life.

Baby Birds: An Artist Looks Into the Nest

by Julie Zickefoose

Sharing her own observations via 400-plus watercolor illustrations, artist Julie Zickefoose has created a lovely natural history documenting the development of 17 types of birds from hatching to fledging. As a bird rehabilitator, each day Zickefoose tenderly borrowed baby birds from their nests and sang to them while drawing their likeness before returning them to their nests on her 17-acre sanctuary. This enchanting book provides a close-up of nature most of us never get to see.


Suzanne Stevens is an Adult Services Librarian at KDL’s Cascade Township Branch. When she is not reading indoors, she can be found reading outside, conversing with wild birds and enjoying nature.


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