A Smithsonian Natural History
By Michael Viney
(Smithsonian Books, Paperback, 9781588342942, 352pp.)
Publication Date: July 6, 2010
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Ireland conjures up images of nature's majesty: sweeping coastlines, rolling green hills, and secluded peat bogs and marshlands. A place of legendary beauty, it is also a land with a rich natural history. Michael Viney invites us to discover the geologic forces that created the island, peer into the famous bone caves that hold unique clues about animals from long ago, and experience the dramatic scenes of the cliff-lined coast and tempestuous seas.
Viney begins deep in the past, when rivers of molten rock and enormous glaciers stripped the land bare. Soon after the glaciers retreated, the island was transformed into a fresh, new landscape, home to an intriguing variety of plants and animals, and an environment that has cultivated a rich human history and inspired countless myths. Infused with the lyricism of Irish prose, Ireland: A Smithsonian Natural History is indispensable for anyone seeking to understand the natural beauty of the Emerald Isle.
Michael Viney's weekly nature column appears in The Irish Times, the country's leading newspaper. His previous book, A Year's Turning, was widely praised as “Irish lyrical writing at its best.”