The Shepherd's Life

The Shepherd's Life

Large Print - 2016
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These modern dispatches from an ancient landscape tell the story of deep-rooted attachment to place, describing a way of life that is little noticed and yet has profoundly shaped history. 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 as the world changes around them.
Publisher: Long Preston : Magna Large Print Books, 2016.
Copyright Date: ©2015
ISBN: 9780750541961
Branch Call Number: 636.30092 REBAN
Characteristics: 342 pages (large print) ; 23 cm.


From Library Staff

Vero_biblio Aug 09, 2015

The author, himself being a sheep farmer, takes us through a year of work with sheeps in the Lake District in England. Rebanks is obviously passionate about hard work and the farming community's century-old traditions, as well as with sustaining the landscape for future generations. A book that w... Read More »

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Feb 20, 2017

Before you grandly say, "Do tourism instead of lumber," read this book to understand on what it feels like to be on the "downside" of cultural imperialism. The first part of the book is the most important.

Oct 14, 2016

I almost quit reading the book somewhere around 100 pages. I was turned off by the defensive attitude which reminded me of the old Rodney Dangerfield shtick. After that the book became delightfully interesting as he described in evocative prose the rhythm of the shepherding life through the four seasons of the year.

Jul 02, 2016

Fascinating insights, wisdom, and details about practical aspects of the sheepherding year.
"... an intimate view inside a seemingly ordinary life; a celebration of the meaning of place, the ties of family to the land around them, and the beauty of the past."

May 25, 2016

Since I'll be visiting the Lake District soon, I thought it was worth my while to read a book about the region and the shepherds who work there -- and it was. This book was a joy to read from start to finish, part memoir, part love letter to a place and to a disappearing way of life. This book made me think a lot about the world we live in and the space I inhabit in it. I finished this book with a deep respect for Rebanks and his neighbors, and also, perhaps oddly, with a deeply felt appreciation that, like the author, I get to go to work every day and do a job that I feel truly matters. This is a great book.

May 22, 2016

What a revelation! This was a fascinating look into a life that I had never thought of. Mr. Rebanks clearly loves his work, his land and his animals. I was so pleasantly educated about sheep and the lake district of England. Thoroughly enjoyable.

Feb 04, 2016

Very interesting read and view. I was one of those troublesome tourists trying to drive down the picturesque lanes against tides of sheep. And walk up hills for the lovely views amid the fuzzy crowds...and yes I did not realize the work, struggle and love that goes into shepherding these flocks. Thanks James of such an intriguing and thoughtprovoking book.

Jan 17, 2016

Rebanks writes about the life of a shepherd in an unsentimental way. The book is also about a sense of place and the vulnerability of this way of life, threatened by agribusiness.

Nov 28, 2015

This is a read that really speaks to me on all levels. Had I known Rebanks during his early years I'd have considered him a teenage jerk on first impression. I understand his love of the tradition, the exhausting labor, his attachment to his granddad. It's often hard to imagine the landscape of such a tiny island about the size of Oregon & the enormous diversity, sometimes just 20 miles away. It's a technicolor dreams-cape watching these shepherds move the flocks up/down steep hills nearly anywhere in Britain, a near religious experience. His paragraph in Winter, section 30 page 5 impressed me with his take on how important traditions are being lost especially in light of the possibility we use up fossil fuels & then nobody can remember or figure out life used to be managed.

Nov 08, 2015

The beginning of this book felt repetitive, costing it half a star. Shortly, however, Rebanks shows what he's made of as a writer, in this first book. It's highly personal, about four generations of his family, and their lives as shepherds in England's Lake District. Rebanks also shows how their lives, and the lives of their neighbors, form a tightly knit web, the results of centuries of life on the land, the sheep, the dogs, the weather, and how these factors interact. It's almost impossible for most farmers to make a living just with sheep, given the price of wool today, so most also must do other jobs as well. One of Rebanks', who is Oxford-educated, is working with UNESCO all over the world on sustainable, ecologically responsible farming. Beautifully written, by a man who loves where he lives, and the life he was born to, and has chosen. Illustrated with splendid photographs by the author.

Oct 22, 2015

Excellent book for farmers and the rest of the population. Explains the sacrifices farmers make to stay on the land and the way weather, disease, and world events impact them.

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