Book Review: A Prickly Affair

This is the first of a long list of books I have in line to review, but I mustn’t let them take over my blog – I’ll space them out, or it would get monotonous and boring. So here’s just one short review for the month, you’ll have to wait until February for the next!

If you are a wildlife enthusiast and love wildlife books, I thoroughly recommend Hugh Warwick’s ‘A Prickly Affair’. I have to say, it’s probably my favourite book of its type.

It is a non-fiction guide to the charm of hedgehogs, and their relationship with humans. Hugh himself is a hedgehog enthusiast, as well as an ecologist and author, and the book is filled with his infectious enthusiasm for the species.
It explores various hedgehog themes, including their conservation, their role as pets, the people who rescue them and his very own hunt for a very rare species.

I particularly like this book for several reasons.
I feel that a lot of wildlife-related books tend to focus too much on the cultural and historical side of the species, or the people who famously worked with them, and I must confess this bores me a little. A Prickly Affair has a more even distribution of themes, giving an overview of anatomy and behaviour, a bit on the historical and cultural background, a bit on the modern day conservation issues and a lot of passion for hedgehogs.
I also really liked the style – I felt it was very well written without over-complicating or detracting from the flow of the book. There was a sense of humour that I enjoyed, and it was used to just the right level.
Hugh’s enthusiasm for the species, as mentioned earlier, is highly contagious, and I think this is what makes the book for me. I have never seen a hedgehog, living in the middle of Surrey – badger country – and I am now more desperate than ever to find one.

It’s a bit late now to add it to your Christmas list, but I would certainly bear it in mind next time you visit a book shop!

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