Wise Hours: A Journey into the Wild and Secret World of Owls (Paperback)

Wise Hours: A Journey into the Wild and Secret World of Owls By Miriam Darlington Cover Image

Wise Hours: A Journey into the Wild and Secret World of Owls (Paperback)

$17.95


On Our Shelves Now at:
Politics and Prose at 5015 Connecticut Avenue NW
2 on hand, as of Jun 24 5:21pm
Politics and Prose at The Wharf (610 Water St SW)
2 on hand, as of Jun 17 2:20pm
Politics and Prose at Union Market (1324 4th Street NE)
1 on hand, as of Jun 24 5:35pm

“Nature writing of the first order.”—The Wall Street Journal


“A beautiful book; wise and sharp-eared as its subject."—Robert Macfarlane


Owls have existed for over sixty million years, and in the relatively short time we have shared the planet with these majestic birds they have ignited the human imagination. But even as owls continue to captivate our collective consciousness, celebrated British nature writer Miriam Darlington finds herself struck by all she doesn’t know about the true nature of these enigmatic creatures.

Darlington begins her fieldwork in the British Isles with her teenage son, Benji. As her avian fascination grows, she travels to France, Serbia, Spain, Finland, and the frosted Lapland borders of the Arctic for rare encounters with the Barn Owl, Tawny Owl, Long-eared Owl, Pygmy Owl, Snowy Owl, and more. But when her son develops a mysterious illness, her quest to understand the elusive nature of owls becomes entangled with her search for finding a cure.


In The Wise Hours, Darlington watches and listens to the natural world and to the rhythms of her home and family, inviting readers to discover the wonders of owls alongside her while rewilding our imagination with the mystery, fragility, and magnificence of all creatures.



Miriam Darlington is the author of The Wise Hours: A Journey into the Wild and Secret World of Owls and contributes frequently to The Times, The Guardian, and The Ecologist. She lives in Devon, England.
Product Details ISBN: 9781959030324
ISBN-10: 1959030329
Publisher: Tin House Books
Publication Date: January 16th, 2024
Pages: 336
Language: English
"While tracing the history and science of owls, the author must confront another haunting enigma: her son's mysterious illness."
— People Magazine, Book of the Week

Unfailingly precise and lovingly poetic. . . .  Nature writing of the first order.
— The Wall Street Journal

Flights of poetic prose raise a shiver. . . . proves we don’t need life lessons to appreciate the world’s marvels.
— The Washington Post

A project to preserve owl awe.
— The Atlantic

A smooth mixture of memoir and nature writing. . . . Lyrical and captivating. . . . heartfelt, enchanting, and beautifully written.
— Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review

Lyrical. . . . moving. . . . Dazzling.
— Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

Beautiful. . . . wonderfully informative and enjoyable.
— Booklist

Captivating.
— The Times

Open this book, and be thrilled to look at the owl with an even more profound sense of knowledge.
— The Muskogee Phoenix

Heartfelt. . . . Darlington’s work is as unique and enchanting as its subjects.
— She Reads

Lovely. . . . An excellent read. . . . Whether dissecting owl pellets, collecting strange samples or braving the elements (or her own foibles), Darlington brings a sense of wonder to her writing.
— Spectrum Culture

Perceptive and affecting.
— BIRDS

Vivid and engaging.
— Sunday Times

Achingly beautiful.
— The Guardian

A beautiful book; wise and sharp-eared as its subject.
— Robert Macfarlane

Enchanting.
— Tristan Gooley, author of How to Read Nature

A lyrical examination of the interweaving place owls hold in nature and human culture; Darlington writes with intimacy and beauty.
— Jonathan C. Slaght, author of Owls of the Eastern Ice

Beautiful descriptions of these magnificent creatures and their habitats.
— P.D. Smith, author of City

Darlington brings humor, humility, and a refreshing subjectivity to her quest to understand these charismatic creatures.
— Melissa Harrison, author of All Among the Barley

A delight. Darlington’s vision, sensitivity and word craft are vital.
— Caspar Henderson, author of A New Map of Wonders