Birds were “[T]he objects of my greatest delight”, wrote John James Audubon (1785–1851), founder of modern ornithology and one of the world’s greatest bird painters. His masterpiece, The Birds of America, depicts almost 500 North American bird species, each image – lifelike and life-size – rendered in vibrant color. Audubon was also an explorer, a woodsman, a hunter, an entertaining and prolific writer, and an energetic self-promoter. Through talent and dogged determination, he rose from backwoods obscurity to international fame.
In This Strange Wilderness, award-winning author Nancy Plain brings attention to the amazing story of this American icon’s career. Before Audubon, no one had seen, drawn, or written so much about the animals of this largely uncharted young country. Aware the wilderness and its wildlife were changing even as he watched, Audubon remained committed almost to the end of his life “[T]o search out the things which have been hidden since the creation of this wondrous world”.
This Strange Wilderness details his art and writing, transporting the listener back to the frontiers of early 19th-century America.
The audiobook is published by University of Nebraska Press.