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The Shepherd's Life
The Shepherd's Life: Modern Dispatches from an Ancient Landscape | James Rebanks
The New York Times bestseller and International PhenomenonOne of the Top Ten Books of 2015, Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times."It's bloody marvelous." - Helen Macdonald, New York Times bestselling author of H IS FOR HAWK"Captivating... A book about continuity and roots and a sense of belonging in an age that's increasingly about mobility and self-invention. Hugely compelling." - Michiko Kakutani, The New York TimesSome people's lives are entirely their own creations. James Rebanks' isn't. The first son of a shepherd, who was the first son of a shepherd himself, his family have lived and worked in the Lake District of Northern England for generations, further back than recorded history. It's a part of the world known mainly for its romantic descriptions by Wordsworth and the much loved illustrated children's books of Beatrix Potter. But James' world is quite different. His way of life is ordered by the seasons and the work they demand. It hasn't changed for hundreds of years: sending the sheep to the fells in the summer and making the hay; the autumn fairs where the flocks are replenished; the grueling toil of winter when the sheep must be kept alive, and the light-headedness that comes with spring, as the lambs are born and the sheep get ready to return to the hills and valleys.The Shepherd's Life the story of a deep-rooted attachment to place, modern dispatches from an ancient landscape that describe a way of life that is little noticed and yet has profoundly shaped the landscape over time. In evocative and lucid prose, James Rebanks takes us through a shepherd's year, offering a unique account of rural life and a fundamental connection with the land that most of us have lost. It is a story of working lives, the people around him, his childhood, his parents and grandparents, a people who exist and endure even as the culture - of the Lake District, and of farming - changes around them. Many memoirs are of people working desperately hard to leave a place. This is the story of someone trying desperately hard to stay.
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PostMisstressStaceyLynne

This was such a fantastic read. It has stayed with me, the idea of being anchored in one place for generations. The connection and depth that can add to your life. I find myself checking in on Mr Rebanks's twitter feed and it always makes me smile.

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kramreep
Pickpick

Beautiful memoir about family, agriculture, and the old world's integration with modern industry. Memoirs can be slow but I found myself getting lost in Rebanks' portrait of the Lake District in England. Great read.

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Cosyreader
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Listening to something a bit different 🐑🚜

kaysworld1 Ohhh I live in the Lake District I am so in love with it. This got me all excited to see my home being recognised 😃How is the book? 2y
Cosyreader @kaysworld1 oh wow, I‘d love to visit after reading this, it sounds so beautiful 😍 I loved the book! 2y
kaysworld1 @Amy-Laura I work in Keswick and I just love it. also when you visit try windermere, ambleside and loads more there amazing for walking, rambling, al outdoor sports also sailing. If you do come here make sure you can drive public transport is a bit sketchy to some places xxx 2y
Cosyreader @kaysworld1 cool, thank you 😊 xxx 2y
40 likes4 comments
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TheDoubleLetterThief
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Pickpick

Loved it. Well written. Unassuming. Passionate.

46 likes1 stack add
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TheDoubleLetterThief
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Came across this as part of Audible sale and HAD to have it. So went on a little online journey to find out more about it, and watched a great clip of the author at the Sydney Writers Festival. This week‘s audiobook is going to take me herding Herdwick sheep in the Lake District in England, with the help of some sheepdogs, to learn more about connection to land.

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Smarkies
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Pickpick

Loved this! It gave me an idea of what life is on the Lake District and not just the idyllic tourist viewpoint. Rebanks has a love of his life as a farmer and the lifestyle that he has inherited from the people who have come before him.

LauraBeth I just read about this book this weekend! I hadn‘t heard about it until I noticed he‘s the same author who co-authored the Beatrix Potter book. (edited) 2y
Smarkies @LauraBeth oh! I did not know that he co-authored a book about Beatrix Potter. What book is that? He mentions her a little here in relation to the Lake District. Apparently she donated her land in this area to the National Trust on the condition that it will be farmed according to tradition of the fell farmers. 2y
Smarkies @LauraBeth thanks! Have stacked it! 😁 2y
20 likes1 stack add4 comments
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bellasocks
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#LIBERTHDAY 🎈🎈🎈Happy Birthday @Liberty

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Mdargusch
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I picked this book because of the blue sky, rolling hills, and sheep herd, but I didn't get very far. I'm not giving up on it though because that's a fantasy of mine - to be a sheep herder. 🐑🐑🐑 #MrBlueSky #junetunz

Cinfhen Ha! It's a gorgeous cover but you might want to think about a new fantasy 😂 3y
drokka Probably don't read Three Bags Full; those sheep might make you rethink your fantasy. 😂 3y
Mdargusch You don't think I will become a shepherdess? @Cinfhen I can always dream. ❤🐑❤ 3y
See All 6 Comments
Mdargusch Good to know @drokka ! 3y
Reviewsbylola 🐑 🐑 ☀️ 3y
emilyhaldi 🤗🤗🤗 3y
86 likes2 stack adds6 comments
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ingredientx
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Pickpick

Am only 50 pages in and have already teared up twice. PMS-y? Yes. But a great book? YES. YES. YES.

Suet624 Ooohhh, this sounds like it's for me!! 3y
65 likes4 stack adds1 comment
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perfectlywinged
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Such a profound and poetic look at what it is like to be a modern shepherd in the Lake District. "This landscape is our home and we rarely stray long from it, or endure anywhere else for long before returning...I love this place; for me it is the beginning and the end of everything l."

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Jaya
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Pickpick

A meditative yet lively look at shepherding communities in N. England.Rebanks mixes passages on the seemingly timeless traditions and practices of his inherited and chosen vocation w/ scenes of immediate toil & reward amongst his family & flock.His life as a UN adviser on sustainable landscapes & farming is linked to these but without preachy finger-wagging. Highly recommended if you are curious about lambs,the Lake District,or living in 2 worlds.

2 likes1 comment
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Kkhalifeh
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Finally cracking into my boxes (packed away these last 2 months) it's like meeting old friends 💕

15 likes1 stack add
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BooksForYears
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#ReadJanuary Day 7 - Books About Nature

Just about the only animals out there to herd are squirrels!

Lynnsoprano Sheep!❤ 3y
Dolly Looks like my kind of book🙂! 3y
127 likes1 stack add2 comments
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MidnightBookGirl
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Got to the restaurant early so I could chow down before book club discussion of The Shepherd's Life. #bookclub #midnightbookgirl

CocoReads That looks delicious 3y
18 likes1 comment
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MidnightBookGirl
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Pickpick

Writing up notes and discussion questions for tonight's @FountainBookstore Book Club meeting. Not my normal read, but I enjoyed this true account of shepherding in the modern world. It totally solidified my belief that I could not handle life in the past or on a working farm- past or present. #fountainbookstore #bookclub #midnightbookgirl

CocoReads I can't even handle it when my power goes out because we have well/septic which means when there's no power there's no water. And that is a huge problem for me. 3y
MidnightBookGirl Lol, same! @CocoReads Plus time travel as a woman is a no go for me. I like tampons and being able to vote and stuff. ;) 3y
21 likes1 stack add2 comments
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ingredientx
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Look what this city girl got for Christmas! Gonna get my shepherd on! #seasonsreadings2016 #bookishgifts

RanaElizabeth This sounds really cool! 3y
rohit-sawant Sounds interesting! And cool pic! 3y
SuperPunkNinja ❤❤❤ 3y
shawnmooney Sounds intriguing! (he said, sheepishly) 3y
95 likes3 stack adds4 comments
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MidnightBookGirl
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Made it through Summer, Fall, and Winter, now I'm going to see a shepherd's life in Springfield! #midnightbookgirl #bookclub

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MidnightBookGirl
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Last night the Hubs and I went on a Tacky Lights tour with our family, and this house on the lake was just breathtaking. Another house we saw had thousands of lights, and most of them were made by the owner. There's just something #magical about Christmas lights! #midnightbookgirl #thispicturehasnothingtodowiththebookbutisntitpretty

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FountainBookstore
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Just a heads up for book club on December 28th.

Tanzy13 📚 3y
6 likes1 comment
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MidnightBookGirl
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Starting this for @FountainBookstore Book Club, although I also have it in paperback. Good so far! #midnightbookgirl #CurrentlyReading #bookclub

13 likes1 stack add
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lucymuse
Pickpick

great read!

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Sparkin
Pickpick

It took a while to charm me, but charm me it did. #Cumbria

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jdtchicago

Later I would understand that modern industrial communities are obsessed with the importance of ‘going somewhere‘ and ‘doing something with your life‘. The implication is an idea I have come to hate, that staying local and doing physical work doesn‘t count for much.

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Sparkin
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#booktober Day11 - #memorablememoirs this is what I'm currently reading. #sheepwrecked #Cumbria #Monbiot #farming #sheep

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Sparkin
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So having read 'Feral' and being persuaded by Monbiot's stance on sheep farming, I thought now would be a good time to read this.

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Abailliekaras
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Pickpick

A good read and an important book: we should all know more about farming. James Rebanks bridges the gap between rural and 'city folk'. Schools should be alive to this too, esp in rural areas.

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Abailliekaras
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An ode to farming; and the fulfilment of doing a job well.
"Our sense of belonging is all about participation."
Meanwhile the kids want me to participate in their life instead, so it's readus interruptis as usual ... ?

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Abailliekaras
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Reflecting on our relationship with animals and nature after The Vegetarian so this is my next read. #bookisholympics #book4

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Abailliekaras
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What to read next? Here are some from my TBR grouped into themes. Should I bring some method to the madness and which book to start with? Help! 📚

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AmandaFields
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I'm still thinking about everything this book had to say on the relationship between people and the land. In addition to being a shepherd, Rebanks is an expert advisor on sustainable tourism with UNESCO. There is a thread of thoughts on tourists and locals woven through the book

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AmandaFields
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Pickpick

A shepherd in England's Lake District writes about his life on the farm with its family history, close knit community, and ancient traditions. I have a new level of respect for shepherds after reading this. Also, the author offers interesting thoughts on the history and culture tied to a place. 🐑⛰

MrBook Great picture! 4y
16 likes2 comments
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Mandie67
Pickpick

This book was an interesting look into a different way of life. Beautiful writing.

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jennifercecile
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Pickpick

A year as seen by a shepherd in the Lake District, but so much more. A meditation on home, place, belonging, and connection. An uncompromising view of farm life and the realities of living in such a popular area. A must read, plus the author has a great Instagram with lots of sheep pictures!

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RachelWeber
Pickpick

I'd never thought much about sheep beyond lamb chops or knitwear but this memoir of a life with the woolly wanderers changed all that. This is a book about family and the natural world and having a vocation that's buried deep in your bones.

jeff This sounds wonderful. My Scottish grandfather was a shepherd and I never got a chance to really learn about his trade. 4y
4 likes3 stack adds1 comment