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The Ravenmaster: My Life with the Ravens at the Tower of London
The Ravenmaster: My Life with the Ravens at the Tower of London | Christopher Skaife
48 posts | 38 read | 53 to read
The first behind-the-scenes account of life with the ravens at Britains most famous national monument.
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Louise
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If you are curious about what it would be like to be the Ravenmaster at the Tower of London, Christopher Skaife tells you all about it from first-hand experience. Lots of photos, too! #LetterR #alphabetgame @Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks

Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks Thank you for playing 📚 2mo
55 likes3 stack adds1 comment
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jlhammar
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Fun and fascinating memoir by Yeoman Warder Christopher Skaife, Ravenmaster at Her Majesty‘s Royal Palace and Fortress of the Tower of London.

#Palace #SavvySettings
@Eggs @Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks

Eggs Perfection 6mo
37 likes1 stack add1 comment
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jenniferw88
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Andrew65 Sounds fab! 9mo
BookwormM I am planning to get this for my Dad 9mo
56 likes1 stack add2 comments
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ImperfectCJ
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Pickpick

Super fun book by and about the Ravenmaster at the Tower of London. I learned about this one from Effin Birds on IG and got the audiobook when I found out it was read by the author. I periodically think it would be cool to keep a hawk or a raven and was rearranging furniture and thinking just this when I heard Chris Skaife say how if you keep a corvid, there will be chaos every time you move anything in your house. So, maybe a hawk instead.

ImperfectCJ Photo of the spooky fog we had as I left work last night. Even though I know my way home quite well, I had to put on the navigation on the highway because it was too foggy to see when the exits were coming up. Not directly raven-related. 11mo
swynn Good to hear a good review about this one-- it's at the top of my “overdue so make up your mind“ stack so I'll get to it really soon. 11mo
ImperfectCJ @swynn I hope you enjoy it! This is one that wasn't on my radar at all, but I'm glad I found it. Sometimes I found the organization of the book a little clunky, but it's possible that's an audiobook thing and it would make sense if I saw it. 11mo
51 likes3 comments
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jenniferw88
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Here you go @Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks - all my 5 🌟 reads of the year so far! Have tagged my favourite favourite of them all - I've even gifted it to a friend (not on Litsy).

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sdbruening
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Pickpick

This book is fantastic. I listened to the audiobook which included some raven sounds every so often. The author is funny, personable, knowledgeable, and a great story teller. It‘s not exactly chronological, but the way he tells it made the winding path not so much of a problem for me. Enjoyable information about ravens, his life as a British soldier, and the Tower of London and its history. Highly recommend if you like British culture and history.

7 likes1 stack add
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jenniferw88
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Pickpick
Oryx This is on my shelf - will have to get to it soon 1y
55 likes1 stack add2 comments
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Reviewsbylola
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I‘m so sad to hear of the disappearance and presumed death of raven Merlina. The ravens fascinated me when I visited the Tower of London in 2018 and I highly recommend the tagged book, written by the current Ravenmaster, Chris Skaife.

TrishB Oh I saw this today 😢 (edited) 2y
Reviewsbylola I‘m still hoping she‘ll show up. It seems odd that no one has seen her, if she flew off. @TrishB 2y
night_shift Ravens are so cool, that's a bummer :( 2y
See All 9 Comments
TrishB Very, fingers crossed 🤞🏻🤞🏻 like there isn‘t enough sad stuff out there! 2y
Tattooedteacher I love those ravens. 2y
Jas16 Oh no! I had not heard this. 2y
LeahBergen I read this today, too! 😭 2y
SW-T Oh, poor Merlina. Was just reading about this. 😢 2y
MallenNC Oh I hadn‘t heard that either. That‘s very sad. I enjoyed this book. 2y
88 likes4 stack adds9 comments
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Ephemera
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Pickpick

If you have ever been to the Tower of London, read this book. If you are interested in the corvids: crows, raven, jays, magpies, read this book. If you are an Anglophile, read this book. Written by the man who is currently the Ravenmaster at the Tower, it is part history and part memoir, and all interesting. Short but packed with info. Made me want to visit London again. Five stars.

5 likes1 stack add
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ozma.of.oz
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Today is the first time I‘ve set foot in my local library since March, and I just about cried y‘all. #thesehappymasks

Melismatic 💪🏻❤️💪🏻 2y
Karkar I love that mask! 2y
TrishB Great mask 👍🏻 2y
See All 6 Comments
Aims42 I love everything about this picture and your caption 🥳 My library is FINALLY opening for in person appointments tomorrow 🎉🎉🎉 2y
TheKidUpstairs I love the mask! 2y
77 likes6 comments
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Deborah42
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Pickpick

An utterly delightful memoir by the current Ravenmaster at The Tower of London. Skaife shares his journey to becoming the Ravenmaster, glimpses of day-to-day life with the ravens, and the legends and literary connections behind the ravens. I was entranced and completely taken into another world.

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Jas16
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Pickpick

I loved this on audio. Read by the author, it felt like a conversation in a pub that you don‘t want to end with someone you never thought you would find so interesting. Skaiefe is the Yeoman Warder who oversees the care of the ravens at the Tower of London and he tells about their upkeep, personalities, and how he came to be the Ravenmaster. I wish I had read this book before I visited the Tower but it has certainly made me excited to go again.

eraderneely Agree, this is excellent on audio 2y
56 likes1 stack add1 comment
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Oblomov26
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Pickpick

Enjoyable book by a serving Yeomen Warder, current Ravenmaster of the Tower of London and a hell of a story teller. Part biography, part history of the tower and the birds association with it, part guide to the care of Ravens, part rumination on life lessons learnt from his care of the birds. A book which leaves you wanting to buy the author a few pints so that he can tell you more stories from his life and experiences.

54 likes1 stack add
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Pogue
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Pickpick

This book made me laugh and cry. It was informative and very much like sitting down and listening to a man talk about what he loves, with some old or odd stories tossed in for measure.

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Pogue
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Never ever underestimate the ravens.

25 likes1 stack add
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toochers
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Books read February 2020

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jen_hayes7
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Kicking off this snowy, wet, long weekend in the best way. Learning more about the tower ravens with my little cuddle cat. I actually suggested naming her Raven, but was shot down by my other half. 🤷🏻‍♀️ #lennox #catsoflitsy

15 likes1 stack add
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jen_hayes7
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While visiting London in the fall, we spent half a day at the Tower of London and I picked up this book from the Raven Store. I‘ve always been fascinated by birds, ravens and crows in particular. The ravens are my favorite (or should I say favourite?) part of visiting the tower. I could watch them for hours. This book is fantastic so far! Highly recommend it for anyone interested in ravens or tower life. The ravenmaster tells a great tale.

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ozma.of.oz
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#chillingphotochallenge #raven

There are ravens living in the Tower of London that, if they leave, will prophecy the end of the English monarchy and Britain.

#TeamSlaughter #Scarathlon @Clwojick 1 point (40 total)

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StayCurious
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#chillingphotochallenge @Clwojick #Raven makes me think of the ravens at the Tower of London. It‘s said that if they ever leave then England will fall.

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jenniferw88
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Seshat
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Completely charming. I was only overseas during the student trip I took when I was 17 but now I want to see the Tower again.

19 likes1 stack add
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Susannah
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Pickpick

I saw the ravens of the Tower of London last year, so this book was very fun (I ❤️ an “I‘ve been there!” book). I appreciated the obvious affection Christopher Skaife has towards the Tower ravens, and the humaneness he tries to show them. There is clearly a measure of captivity, but Skaife‘s up front about it while conveying that he believes the birds allow him to care for them, and that he owes more to them than they to him. ⭐️⭐️⭐️

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keithmalek
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There are no simply words for how inexplicably stupid human beings are.

MrBook 😳 Wow. Just. Wow. 3y
keithmalek @MrBook that's nothing. Check out my post for the book Fear of the Animal Planet and find out what visitors do to zoo animals. 3y
MrBook @keithmalek 😳 Oh no, I don‘t wanna! 😔 3y
15 likes3 comments
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Jschultzems
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Pickpick

(Disclaimer: I listened to Audio) The legend of the ravens at the Tower of London goes back centuries, and this book sheds light on the history and modern day life of the ravens and those who take care of them, as told by the current Ravenmaster. While I am sure the book is splendid (probably has pictures, too), the audio is performed by the author, adding his British accent to the story in a way that written text never can. A quick, fun read.

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nikirtehsuxlol
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Beyoncé in the background and ravens in the front? Excited to finally start this one. Nonfiction. This guy does something with ravens at the Tower of London.

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nikirtehsuxlol
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#libraryhaul what should I read first

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rabbitprincess
Pickpick

A fascinating look at the ravens who live at the Tower of London, and the man who is primarily responsible for their welfare. Now I want to read more about birds and go back to the Tower for a tour! (We did the self-guided option when I went last time.)

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Callsie
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Pickpick

This is fun to pick up if you‘ve been to the Tower of London especially, but even if you were just curious. Went in April ‘18 and got the tour from ‘Shady‘ who gets a mention in these pages. I‘m SUPER jealous of the beefeaters and their families who get to live here (even with the odd creepy ghost)!

Crazeedi So cool! 4y
10 likes1 comment
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Reviewsbylola
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Pickpick

#remindsyouofyourhappyplace

I wanted to read this before my second trip to England next month, but I wish it had been published before my visit to The Tower of London last year.

It is a fascinating memoir of the Ravenmaster of the ToL. I never thought I would care about a bunch of birds but I fell in love with them and I was able to determine that the raven that I had an up close encounter with during my visit is Jubilee! #booked2019

LeahBergen This sounds fascinating! *stacked* 4y
Cinfhen That‘s pretty awesome!!! I remember our guide getting excited about spotting a squirrel and my kids thought he was nuts!!!! 4y
Cinfhen Woohoo 🥳🥳🥳🥳you finished quarter one!!!!! Well done ❤️ 4y
See All 6 Comments
Reviewsbylola The squirrels there must be super friendly. I saw a picture of the current Ravenmaster with a squirrel perched on his shoulder! @Cinfhen 4y
RowReads1 I know of him because of Twitter. Didn‘t know he had a book. Corvids are fascinating. 4y
Cinfhen I‘m still traumatized from those f%cking critters who were the bane of my existence ~ we fought daily over the dam garbage can lids!!!! 4y
106 likes4 stack adds6 comments
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SkeletonKey
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Still trying to beat this 2019 winter book lull.

Starting this audiobook tonight. Fingers crossed!

#memoir #audiobook

46 likes5 stack adds2 comments
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WanderingBookaneer
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76 likes1 stack add2 comments
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Christinak
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The Tower ravens are big, unpredictable #creatures, with a powerful bite, who roam freely about the Tower and who have the ability to fly off at any moment if they so desire. #QuotsyJan19

52 likes2 stack adds
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SW-T
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Pickpick

Rumor has it that if a raven from the Tower should ever leave, the city of London will fall. Everything you wanted to know about the diet, social structure, grooming, legend, history, health, and pecking order of corvids as well as the answer to another burning question: how does one become a Ravenmaster? The book strikes a good balance of being personable, candid, conversational, and fascinating. Ravens - who knew?

12 likes1 stack add
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SW-T
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Like his modern approach to keeping the ravens at the Tower of London. His approach sounds like a labor of love. ❤️ Learning a lot about birds and ravens. Good book so far!

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TieDyeDude
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Pickpick

A cute book relating anecdotes from the Ravenmaster and legends regarding the Tower of London and the resident ravens. It was like a 6 hour audiotour.

37 likes1 stack add
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MallenNC
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Pickpick

The Tower of London is such a fascinating historic site. This short book was an interesting look at the work of protecting the ravens and life at the Tower. #nonfiction2018

Librarybelle I really need to read this one! 4y
Reviewsbylola I just visited there last February! 4y
MallenNC @Librarybelle I think you‘d like it. The best parts are about the ravens‘ personalities. 4y
MallenNC @Reviewsbylola It‘s a great place to visit! I have been a few times and I always learn something new. 4y
JaclynW Oh cool! I love the Tower of London! I've been twice. Such a fascinating historical site! 4y
25 likes1 stack add5 comments
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Vagablonde
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Pickpick

Finally, a review of the actual book!

This is a quick, fun read. It's got history, ornithology, psychology, mythology, jokes, gore, and ghosts.

CaitZ I just finished this too. It really is very fascinating 4y
6 likes1 comment
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CaitZ
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Pickpick

Ravens are one of my favorite birds so I had to read this. Skaife takes a conversational tone as he talks about his life and how he cares for the birds. I enjoyed it.

Booksnchill Listening to this one now- he is a character himself! 4y
Booksnchill Also- great pic! 4y
38 likes1 stack add2 comments
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MallenNC
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We have one more snow delay tomorrow so I‘m starting a new library book. I think this will be fun. #nonfiction2018

20 likes1 stack add
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Vagablonde
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Pickpick

The second fantastic novella that's not in the database is Talia Hibbert's Merry Inkmas. Super hot, funny, and incredibly quotable.

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Vagablonde
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Pickpick

I've managed to read two excellent novellas this week, neither of which are in the database.

The first is Tikka Chance on Me, by Suleikha Snyder, which is funny and sweet and easy to read.

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Vagablonde

Yeesh, it's been a while. Between DNFs, general busyness, and boring reading for research, I haven't had anything to post. But now I do and I'll try to keep up better.

3 likes1 stack add
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Wife
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Pickpick

I‘m charmed! A bit of history, a touch of memoir, and some raven behavior. I love ❤️ when it feels like someone is telling me a story, instead of reading a book to me. The author does a lovely job. His love and respect for the ravens are apparent. This was a solid 3/5⭐️s. Totally recommend the audiobook!

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Augustdana
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Some A+ dad jokes in here. Top five questions asked in the Tower of London.

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RanaElizabeth
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Yeah, I would definitely say the last month or so has been very blessed with #bookmail.

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NotAJot
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Just two dudes who write books about birds! Fantastic evening launching the #Ravenmaster's excellent new book

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LauraBeth
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Do you need a Helen Macdonald fix? 😍 Here is her review of The Ravenmaster:

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2018/10/ravens-tower-of-london/5683...

DivineDiana Thank you! I bought H is for Hawk for my husband when it first came out. He is reading it very slowly! 😉 The Skaife book sounds interesting! 🐦 (edited) 4y
Cathythoughts Wow ! What a picture 4y
LauraBeth @DivineDiana I‘m curious to know what he thinks about it after he finishes it 😀 4y
LauraBeth @Cathythoughts it‘s a tad creepy! 😂 4y
DivineDiana Will do! But of the four or five he is reading, this one will probably not be finished this year. 🤷‍♀️🙂📚 4y
88 likes5 comments