Review of ‘Wild Peak’, by Mark Hamblin

This review is by Julie Bunting, and was published originally in The Peak Advertiser, the Peak District's local free newspaper, on 22nd December 2003, and is reproduced with Julie's kind permission.

by Mark Hamblin
Published by Halsgrove
ISBN 1-84114-288-3 (2003)

This is our last review of 2003, offering readers the opportunity to win a superb new book from Halsgrove Publishing. Wild Peak is written by Mark Hamblin and illustrated almost exclusively with his own outstanding photographs of the Peak's wildlife and natural habitats.

More than 180 full-colour photographs are complemented by accounts of face-to-face wildlife encounters from an author who has explored all corners of the Peak, from the dramatic high moorlands to the gentler limestone countryside of the White Peak. En route Mark Hamblin has captured close-ups and views in all seasons, bringing a richness of colour, light and shade to nearly every page of this lavishly illustrated book.

Such is the standard of his work that the author was a major contributor to 'Living Britain' published to accompany the BBC television series in 1999.

Mark Hamblin is being modest in stating that his photographs are the result of many hours spent outdoors; he has clearly been up and about from sunrise to sunset and in all weathers, including snow on Kinder of all places, where he captured images of mountain hares in their white winter coats, and red grouse. He has truly lived close to nature and his illustrations benefit from supporting stories of the relationship between author and subject and various projects and surveys.

Landowners, farmers and gamekeepers, bird watchers and naturalists have all played a part in putting Mark Hamblin in touch with the flora and fauna of the Peak, while Sir Martin Doughty, Chair of English Nature, has written the foreword to this fascinating book.

Review by Julie Bunting

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