Timothy's Book

Notes Of An English Country Tortoise

Verlyn Klinkenborg

Published: 12 October 2006
Hardback, Other
110x180mm, 192 pages
ISBN: 9781846270543

Other Editions


Image of

Published: 14 June 2007
Paperback, B Format
129x198mm, 192 pages
ISBN: 9781846270550


Timothy, a wise and eloquent tortoise, has spent some fifty years among humans, living in their midst in the lovely Hampshire village of Selborne, the occasional object of study for his host, Gilbert White, whose letters famously comprise The Natural History of Selborne. But Timothy is inclined to study too. His observations of the natural world that surrounds him can match those of his master for aptness, precision, illumination and beauty - his gaze falls with equal aplomb on the flitting martins and swallows, trooping frogs, mating harvest mice, hares nibbling at the cabbage and, above all, on those 'tottering, stilt-gaited beasts', their instincts so derelict, who tower over Timothy and make their odd ways known to him. Who would guess that a tortoise marooned in the heart of old England could tell us so much? This is a wise, severe and unforgettable old tortoise's own short history of humanity. It is perfect for the Telegraph-to-Attenborough readership, for twitchers, ramblers and National Trusters, for readers of Richard Mabey's Nature Cure and Richard Benson's The Farm, Horatio Clare and The Lore of the Land.

About the author

Image of Verlyn Klinkenborg

Verlyn Klinkenborg is the author of three previous books: Making Hay, The Last Fine Time and The Rural Life. He is on the editorial board of the New York Times, and he lives on a farm in upstate New York with his wife. More about the author


‘A charming and most enjoyable work ... Klinkenborg's prose is a pleasure to read’ Richard Adams, author of WATERSHIP DOWN



‘Brilliant and audacious’ Richard Mabey, author of NATURE CURE

‘This tortoise-eye view of life ... is a treat to read’

Mind Unit - websites, content management and email marketing for the arts