Working Class Nature Writers Chosen by Natasha CarthewBy Hodder & Stoughton
I have put this list together in celebration of my favourite working-class nature writers. Most are writers writing today, but I couldn’t help but add a couple of favourite writers from childhood. As a Country Writer and Founder of The Nature Writing Prize for Working Class Writers, it’s incredibly important to me that we continue to break down the barriers to nature writing, and what is perceived as a nature writer.
Nature writing exists because we as individuals want to understand our own engagement and place within it, it decentralises us and reminds us that we are not the only focus or thing of importance on the planet. The best nature writing conveys a clear sense of place and focuses on the natural world and our human relationship with it, something which I believe all these books in my list accomplish brilliantly.
Natasha Carthew£16.99 £16.14
Daniel Woodrell£9.99 £9.49
Brutal, violent and completely gripping, this is nature writing is gloves off, dirt beneath the fingernails type stuff. Country Writing at it’s best.
Laurie Lee£9.99 £9.49
The follow-up to Cider with Rosie, Lee writes like an poet, both tranquil and flowing, the journey through this book is filled with a certain kind of delicate magic.
On Gallows Down: Place, Protest and Belonging (Shortlisted for the Wainwright Prize 2022 for Nature Writing - Highly Commended)
Nicola Chester£10.99 £10.44
An essential portrait of our relationship to the land beyond tenure, this book is an evocative and inspiring memoir influenced by a landscape greatly loved.
Patrick Kavanagh£12.99 £12.34
A powerful autobiographical novel from one of Ireland's best-loved writers, Kavanagh's evocative account of his rural Irish upbringing describes a patriarchal society surviving on the edge of poverty, sustained by the land and an voracious love of gossip.
Carmen Marcus£8.99 £8.54
An incredible and devastating story that has both feet firmly stamped in nature. In graceful prose, Marcus sketches an image of the North Yorkshire coast that is stunningly evocative of time, of place, of childhood, and of what it means not to fit in.
Nadeem Perera and Ollie Olanipekun£16.99
Nature is a powerful source of creativity, inspiration and healing; however, it has not always felt like a safe space for people of colour. This book by Flock Together changed that, by inspiring everyone, regardless of race, religion or economic status, to build their relationship with the outdoors and embrace all that nature has to offer.
Kerri ni Dochartaigh£10.99 £10.44
In Thin Places, Kerri explores how nature kept her stable and helped her to heal. She asks us to reclaim and rejoice in our landscape no matter where we are, and to remember that the land we fight over is much more than lines on a map.
I Belong Here: A Journey Along the Backbone of Britain: WINNER OF THE 2021 BOOKS ARE MY BAG READERS AWARD FOR NON-FICTION
Anita Sethi£10.99 £10.44
A journey of reclamation through the natural landscapes of the North, vividly exploring identity, nature, place and belonging. Beautifully written and truly inspiring, I Belong Here heralds a powerful and refreshing take on nature writing.
Adam Farrer£9.99 £9.49
Cold Fish Soup is a funny, caring look at a place and its inhabitants, and the ways in which they shape and influence us. Vividly documenting the minutiae of small-town life on the margins, this book is as much about the nature of us as humans, as it is about the nature around us.
Tanya Shadrick£16.99 £16.14
Returning from a near death experience after giving birth, Tanya Shadrick vows to stop sleepwalking through life. This memoir is moving, inspirational and above all bold. A poetic memoir narrating her journey from rural working-class Devon to where she is today, a beautiful, generous writer.