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Walking, foraging, observing – an event with John Wright

Dear Readers,

We hope the extra hour of light has delivered its welcome annual boost of optimism. This always feels like an excellent time of year to be reading about the natural world, as it opens back up and welcomes us from our hibernations.

To that end, we are delighted to announce our talk with John Wright, for his new book The Observant Walker. Wright has been a firm favourite on the Nature Writing shelves since we opened nearly two years ago & we are excited to be welcoming him to Bristol on Wednesday 24th May, at Future Leap event space (at the bottom of Gloucester Road, by the arches). Tickets can be found on our website here & more info follows below.


John Wright
John Wright

The Observant Walker is a guide to the food, nature and history to be found all around us when we walk.

John Wright is an expert in the natural world and has been leading forays around Britain for decades. As an expert forager, he shows people how to identify the edible species that abound – but he also reveals the natural history, stories and science behind our surroundings. In The Observant Walker, he takes us with him on eight walks: from verdant forests to wild coastlines, via city pavements, fields and rolling hills, he illuminates what can be found on a walk across any British terrain, and how we might observe and truly understand them, for ourselves.

When we go for a walk, whether in the countryside or city, we pass through landscapes full of natural beauty and curiosities both visible and invisible – but though we might admire the view, or wonder idly about the name of a flower, we rarely have the knowledge to fully engage with what we see. When we do, our sense of place is expanded, our understanding deepened and we can discover richness in even the most everyday stroll.

Warm, wise and endlessly informative, with helpful illustrations and suggested routes, The Observant Walker will help you to see the world around you with new eyes: no walk will be the same again.

“John Wright writes as though he is talking directly to you, a good friend in the same room. His harvest of fascinating information is worn lightly, with funny, whimsical observations.” BBC Countryfile

“This illustrated survey (The Forager’s Calendar) is historically detailed, enriched by the author’s deep knowledge of British landscapes and natural history.” Guardian

John Wright is a naturalist and one of Great Britain’s leading experts on fungi. His most recent books include A Spotter’s Guide to the Countryside and The Forager’s Calendar. He lives in Dorset, where he regularly leads forays into nature and goes on long walks across all terrains. The Forager’s Calendar won the 2020 Guild of Food Writers Award and the 2020 Woodland Book of the Year