Synopses & Reviews
The bird book for birders and non-birders alike that will excite and inspire by providing a new and deeper understanding of what common, mostly backyard, birds are doing — and why.
"Can birds smell?" "Is this the same Cardinal that was at my feeder last year?" "Do Robins 'hear' worms?" In What It's Like to Be a Bird, David Sibley answers the most frequently asked questions about the birds we see most often. This special large-format volume is geared as much to non-birders as it is to the out-and-out obsessed, covering more than 200 species and including more than 430 new illustrations by the author. While its focus is on familiar backyard birds — Blue Jays, Nuthatches, Chickadees — it also examines certain species that can be fairly easily observed, such as the sea-shore dwelling Puffin. David Sibley's exacting artwork and wide-ranging expertise brings observed behaviors vividly to life. (For most species, the primary illustration is reproduced life-sized.) And while the text is aimed at adults — including fascinating new scientific research on the myriad ways birds have adapted to environmental changes — it is non-technical, making it the perfect occasion for parents and grandparents to share their love of birds with young children, who will delight in the big, full-color illustrations of birds in action. Unlike any other book he has written, What It's Like to Be a Bird is poised to bring a whole new audience to David Sibley's world of birds.
"Most people would consider birdbrained an insult; Sibley's new book may change their minds....[E]ngagingly curious field notes on flight, foraging, nesting…and navigation....This title is enthusiastically recommended for both armchair birdwatchers and serious birders." Booklist (Starred Review)
"Lingering over every page of What It's Like to Be a Bird, this is what can be seen: The book's beauty mirrors the beauty of birds it describes so marvelously." NPR
"A fascinating work that
fulfills its goal to 'give readers some sense of what it's like to be a
bird'....[Readers] will emerge with a deeper appreciation of birds,
and of what observable behaviors can reveal about animals' lives." Publishers Weekly
About the Author
David Allen Sibley is the author and illustrator of the series of successful guides to nature that bear his name, including
The Sibley Guide to Birds. He has contributed to
Smithsonian, Science, The Wilson Journal of Ornithology, Birding, BirdWatching, North American Birds, and
The New York Times. He is a recipient of the Roger Tory Peterson
Award for Promoting the Cause of Birding from the American Birding
Association and the Linnaean Society of New York's Eisenmann Medal. He
lives and birds in Massachusetts.