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BBC Wildlife Magazine
'The Peregrine should be known as one of the finest works on nature ever written'
With no prior knowledge of birds, Baker is seized with an unexplained longing to track the peregrine falcons that hunt in the river valley behind his home each winter. Though his subjects are far more elusive than the pigeons and gulls on which they prey, on rare occasions he sees a peregrine roosting or bathing, or spots a fresh kill in the grass. He outlines their strict hunting ethos and as the winter approaches, he resolves to shun the world of men in fierce pursuit of the falcon's inner life. As the landscape thaws, Baker shares the hawk's absolute terror in the face of the stumbling, erratic human beings encroaching on its territory. Veering swiftly from the mundane to the miraculous, Baker's self-effacing diary of a long winter in the wild is a triumph of pure and immediate description.