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The Bird Way

Best Seller
The Bird Way by Jennifer Ackerman
Paperback $18.00
May 04, 2021 | ISBN 9780735223035

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  • May 04, 2021 | ISBN 9780735223035

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  • May 05, 2020 | ISBN 9780735223011

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  • May 05, 2020 | ISBN 9780735223028

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“A brilliant synthesis of bird behavior research . . .What makes Ackerman’s book a joy to read is not just the stories she tells, but her vivid writing style . . . If there’s one thing Ackerman’s illuminating book makes clear, it’s that there is no single way to be a bird. Her opus is a celebration of the sheer diversity of avian behaviors, practices, predilections and the birds she writes about are ‘iconoclasts and rule breakers’ and remain ‘layered in mystery.’ It is this decision to focus on birds’ idiosyncrasies, to resist generalizations and categorizations, to break down assumptions about bird behavior, and to show how ‘individual birds are every bit as distinctive as we humans are’ that make this book so remarkable.” Birding Magazine

“From tales of dazzling plumage to anecdotes about almost unfathomable mimicry, Jennifer Ackerman’s The Bird Way is a walk through the mysteries, wonders, and peculiarities of the avian world . . . Ackerman’s excitement and love for it are evident in her writing. Her superb storytelling paints a rich picture that engages the reader’s imagination, making sometimes-hard-to-grasp research accessible.” Science Magazine
 “[Ackerman’s] exhilarating book will leave you as awestruck by the complexities and contradictions of bird life as she is.” San Francisco Chronicle

“After reading Ackerman (‘The Genius of Birds’), you may listen harder to the various chirps, cheeps and coos coming from your backyard. Her new book reminds us that we have a lot in common with birds — like us, they are capable of deception and manipulation, not to mention cooperation, culture and communication.” —The Washington Post

“In The Bird Way, Jennifer Ackerman digs deeper and ranges farther into bird behavior, pulling tasty stories out of rich ground as she hops across the continents [ . . . ] Like a bowerbird, Ms. Ackerman gathers and displays treasures to amaze and delight—then lets the scientists’ stories take center stage [. . .] Refreshingly, Ackerman spotlights a number of female researchers.” —Wall Street Journal

“[S]plendid and spellbinding . . . The Bird Way shows us a new way to view birds, yes—but perhaps even better, through their eyes, intellect, and more-than-human senses, it lets birds reveal to us the hidden realities of our shared world.” —Sy Montgomery, American Scholar

 “Ackerman brings scientific research alive with personal observations of colorful and fascinating birds, from the kea parrot to the raven to the brush turkey, among others. By showing how each species communicates, plays, parents, works, and thinks, she reminds us that there is no one way to be a bird.” Science Friday

“Ackerman packs her book with insightful observations, interesting factoids, and deep dives into new research about birds as varied as seagulls, emus, vultures, and robins.”—Undark

“Ackerman’s vibrant writing ensures that all things bird are thoroughly compelling and enjoyable.” Booklist, starred review
“Ackerman reminds readers that birds are thinking beings . . . She brings scientific research alive with personal field observations and accounts of her encounters with colorful and fascinating birds . . . [The Bird Way] will engage all readers interested in learning more about birds and natural history.”Library Journal, starred review

“A brightly original book . . . Ackerman is a smooth writer; her presentation of ideas is deft, and her anecdotes are consistently engaging . . . [She] demonstrates bird science as an evolving discipline that is consistently fascinating, and she offers brilliant discussions of the use of smell, long overlooked but indeed deployed for navigation; courtship signals; predator avoidance, and, not surprisingly, locating food. “—Kirkus Reviews, starred review

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