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Simon Barnes - Author

About the Author

Simon Barnes, the well-loved and frequently controversial columnist for the RSPB's Birds magazine, is the author of a dozen books, including three on wildlife and three novels. He is also the award-winning chief sportswriter for the Times. He lives in Suffolk with his family and has seen a barn owl, kingfisher and marsh harrier in his garden.

Featured books by Simon Barnes

Other books by Simon Barnes

My Natural History The Animal Kingdom and How it Shaped Me

My Natural History The Animal Kingdom and How it Shaped Me

Author: Simon Barnes Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/03/2011

The animal kingdom came to my rescue. It always has done. I suspect it always will. It rescued me at Sunnyhill Primary School, it rescued me in my adolescence, it has rescued me over and over again throughout my adult life. In My Natural History Simon Barnes, like a modern-day Gerald Durrell, weaves together the story of his life via the animals and the natural encounters that have shaped it. From the greater horseshoe bat that transported Barnes from the dull classrooms of his youth, to the great whale which marked the moment he knew he was going to be a writer, from Himalayan Kingfishers in India, to majestic lions in the Luangwa valley, each animal represents a piece in the puzzle of Barnes's life. With its humour and poetry, every page fizzing with Barnes's infectious enthusiasm, My Natural History cannot fail to delight and enthrall any lover of the wild world.

The Horsey Life A Journey of Discovery with a Rather Remarkable Mare

The Horsey Life A Journey of Discovery with a Rather Remarkable Mare

Author: Simon Barnes Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/04/2010

All I can say is that there was something - right from the first. A stubby little mare, bright bay with remarkably large ears. A white star on her forehead shaped like Madagascar, and a huge arse... This is the story of an extraordinary relationship - and an extraordinary horse. When Barnes buys Dolly Dolores VII, he knows he has got something special. She is feisty, restless, mysterious - sometimes crazily unpredictable. But she is also, to her owner's delight, a jumper of mesmerising poise and skill; she canters like a ballerina, gallops like a wild thing. Then, one day, Dolly does something so startling, so inexplicable that she brings her owner to breaking point. Barnes is faced with a terrible decision...The Horsey Life is about a friendship pushed to its limits; but it is also filled with larks and joy - a book which takes you right to the heart of the world of horses and those that love them.

My Natural History The Animal Kingdom and How it Shaped Me

My Natural History The Animal Kingdom and How it Shaped Me

Author: Simon Barnes Format: Hardback Release Date: 04/03/2010

The animal kingdom came to my rescue. It always has done. I suspect it always will. It rescued me at Sunnyhill Primary School, it rescued me in my adolescence, it has rescued me over and over again throughout my adult life. In My Natural History Simon Barnes, like a modern-day Gerald Durrell, weaves together the story of his life via the animals and the natural encounters that have shaped it. From the greater horseshoe bat that transported Barnes from the dull classrooms of his youth, to the great whale which marked the moment he knew he was going to be a writer, from Himalayan Kingfishers in India, to majestic lions in the Luangwa valley, each animal represents a piece in the puzzle of Barnes's life. With its humour and poetry, every page fizzing with Barnes's infectious enthusiasm, My Natural History cannot fail to delight and enthral any lover of the wild world.

Horsey Life

Horsey Life

Author: Simon Barnes Format: Hardback Release Date: 11/09/2008

All I can say is that there was something - right from the first. A stubby little mare, bright bay with remarkably large ears. A white star on her forehead shaped like Madagascar, and a huge arse... This is the story of an extraordinary relationship - and an extraordinary horse. When Barnes buys Dolly Dolores VII, he knows he has got something special. She is feisty, restless, mysterious - sometimes crazily unpredictable. But she is also, to her owner's delight, a jumper of mesmerising poise and skill; she canters like a ballerina, gallops like a wild thing. Then, one day, Dolly does something so startling, so inexplicable that she brings her owner to breaking point. Barnes is faced with a terrible decision... The Horsey Life is about a friendship pushed to its limits; but it is also filled with larks and joy - a book which takes you right to the heart of the world of horses and those that love them.

How to be Wild We are All Wild. it's Just That Civilisation Keeps Getting in the Way

How to be Wild We are All Wild. it's Just That Civilisation Keeps Getting in the Way

Author: Simon Barnes Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/08/2008

As every one who has patted a dog, smelled a rose, taken a walk, or even had a drink in the garden well knows, humans have a soul-deep need for non-human forms of life. This book is about pushing our birthright of wildness just that little bit further. In How to be Wild, Barnes takes us on a journey through a year, from one raucous spring to the next with sparrows and flying squirrels, elephants, badgers and mosquitoes, as his companions. And again and again, he helps us to realise an essential truth: that by enjoying the wild world, by seeking to understand the wild world, our own lives become richer and more satisfying.

How to be Wild

How to be Wild

Author: Simon Barnes Format: Hardback Release Date: 04/10/2007

We are all wild. It's just that civilisation keeps getting in the way. And the more civilised we become, the more we need the wild: wild places, wild creatures, and wild experiences. As every one who has patted a dog, smelled a rose, taken a walk, or even had a drink in the garden well knows, humans have a soul-deep need for non-human forms of life. This book is about pushing our birthright of wildness just that little bit further. In How to be Wild , Barnes takes us on a journey through a year, from one raucous spring to the next - with sparrows and flying squirrels, blackbirds and elephants, badgers, butterflies and mosquitoes, as his companions. And again and again, in myriad different ways, he helps us to realise an essential truth: that by enjoying the wild world, by saving the wild world, by seeking to understand the wild world, our own lives become richer and more satisfying. That is what being wild means.

Meaning of Sport

Meaning of Sport

Author: Simon Barnes Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 02/08/2007

In The Meaning of Sport , award-winning sportswriter Simon Barnes gives you his grandstand seat for a journey from the Olympic Games in Athens to the World Cup in Germany - via the Ashes series, the Ryder Cup, Wimbledon, and more. He examines why sport holds us all in such thrall, how it uplifts and crushes us - and can seem to matter more than life itself. He challenges us to recognise the intelligence of Wayne Rooney, the making of Freddie Flintoff, the mythic nature of Steve Redgrave; and he ponders the ultimate cruelty of the game. This is the book which asks the questions no one else has thought of, and finds some surprising answers. Sport has never been written about like this before.

How to be a Bad Birdwatcher

How to be a Bad Birdwatcher

Author: Simon Barnes Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 23/03/2006

Look out of the window. See a bird. Enjoy it. Congratulations. You are now a bad birdwatcher. Anyone who has ever gazed up at the sky or stared out of the window knows something about birds. In this funny, inspiring, eye-opening book, Simon Barnes paints a riveting picture of how bird-watching has framed his life and can help us all to a better understanding of our place on this planet. How to be a bad birdwatcher shows why birdwatching is not the preserve of twitchers, but one of the simplest, cheapest and most rewarding pastimes around.

Bad Birdwatcher's Companion *Signed*

Bad Birdwatcher's Companion *Signed*

Author: Simon Barnes Format: Hardback Release Date: 29/09/2005

Bad Birdwatcher's Companion 50 Intimate Portraits of Britain's Best-Loved Birds

Bad Birdwatcher's Companion 50 Intimate Portraits of Britain's Best-Loved Birds

Author: Simon Barnes Format: Hardback Release Date: 08/09/2005

Few books are more intimidating than a conventional field guide. There are simply too many birds in them. This book introduces the reader to Britain's most obvious birds. But it does more than that: it also explains them. It explains the way that different birds do different things, eat different food, sing different songs and live different lives, and it explains why they are different. If you are a would-be birdwatcher but don't know where to start, A Bad Field Guide is for you. It will help you understand birdwatching: but far more important, it will help you begin to understand birds. Robin...But have you ever wondered what a red breast means to a robin? A red breast is not just the way a human can recognise a robin when it comes a-calling, when it sits on a spade or a Christmas card. The red breast is not just a bit of chance colouration. No: the red breast is the core of the robin's being. The red breast is the love, the honour and the glory of a robin. Have you noticed that a robin positively flaunts it? It is as if he is telling the world: for God's sake, I'm a robin!

How to be a Bad Birdwatcher

How to be a Bad Birdwatcher

Author: Simon Barnes Format: Hardback Release Date: 02/09/2004

Even the baddest birdwatcher in the world knows something about birds. Contrary to popular belief, you don't have to be an anoraked twitcher with top-of-the-range binoculars to have a good time admiring our often-neglected feathered friends in the sky. In this revolutionary approach to ornithology self-confessed bad birdwatcher Simon Barnes gives us the confidence and motivation to get pleasure from one of the simplest, cheapest hobbies there are: watching birds...without letting birdwatching get in the way.