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Dawn Light: Dancing with Cranes and Other Ways to Start the Day Hardcover – September 1, 2009


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Frequently Bought Together

Dawn Light: Dancing with Cranes and Other Ways to Start the Day + A Natural History of the Senses
Price for both: $31.59

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company (September 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393061736
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393061734
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 5.6 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #207,864 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“Starred Review. These pieces are accessible and lyrically written, and they flow well, one after another, making reading the book a true pleasure. Ackerman's fans and readers who appreciate nature writing at its finest will love this.” (Library Journal)

“[Y]ou're immersed in Ackerman's glorious prose, studded with arresting phrases and breathtakingly beautiful images....Her gift to us is the sheer pleasure of seeing the world through her loving eyes.” (Wendy Smith - Washington Post)

About the Author

Diane Ackerman has been the finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Nonfiction in addition to many other awards and recognitions for her work, which include the best-selling The Zookeeper’s Wife and A Natural History of the Senses. She lives with her husband Paul West in Ithaca, New York.

More About the Author

Diane Ackerman is the author of two dozen highly-acclaimed works of poetry and nonfiction, including the bestsellers "The Zookeeper's Wife" and "A Natural History of the Senses," and the Pulitzer Prize Finalist, "One Hundred Names for Love."

In her most recent book, "The Human Age: the World Shaped by Us," she confronts the unprecedented fact that the human race is now the single dominant force of change on the whole planet. Humans have "subdued 75 percent of the land surface, concocted a wizardry of industrial and medical marvels, strung lights all across the darkness." Ackerman takes us on an exciting journey to understand this bewildering new reality, introducing us to many of the inspiring people and ideas now creating, and perhaps saving, our future

A note from the author: "I find that writing each book becomes a mystery trip, one filled with mental (and sometimes physical) adventures. The world revealing itself, human nature revealing itself, is seductive and startling, and that's always been fascinating enough to send words down my spine. Please join me on my travels. I'd enjoy the company."

Contact me or follow my posts here: www.dianeackerman.com, @dianesackerman, www.facebook.com/dianeackerman.author



Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Truly happy that she shares all this with us.
dale remlee
She said it was the kind of book that, after every few pages, you want to go shake someone by the shoulder and say, " Hey, listen to this!"
Judy Joy
This is an elegant and beautifully written book.
Florence M. Laprath

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Stephanie De Pue VINE VOICE on October 21, 2009
Format: Hardcover
"Dawn Light" is a new work by storyteller/poet/naturalist Diane Ackerman, in which she, natch, considers the world around her at dawn. It is chock full of close personal observation, research, and learning and shows a distinct resemblance to her previous best-selling A Natural History of the Senses. It also, in its level of detail, animal-loving spirit, and lushly-written prose, shows its kinship to her recent New York Times best-seller,The Zookeeper's Wife: A War Story.

Ackerman gives us a year of dawns, as she considers that time of day at her homes in Palm Beach, Florida, and Ithaca, New York. We get her wonderfully fresh, sympathetic observations of the birds that sing dawn in, and all the other animals -- including us humans, she never lets us forget -- that then begin their days. She gives us a consideration of astronomy, particularly as it relates to dawn. But she does much more, roaming the current-day world, going as far as Australia's aborigines and India's holy rivers, to show us the dawn beliefs and rituals of other societies. She tells us that Jewish liturgy includes a list of blessings to be said first thing in the morning, one of them being thanks to God for giving us roosters to crow in dawn.

The writer also goes backwards in time to the ancients, giving us a good picture of the learned Greek scientist Archimedes; explaining how the works of the well-known lesbian poet Sapho came to be saved in that wonder of the ancient world, the library at Alexandria, Egypt: then came to be lost, and partially found again.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Sue B. Detisch on October 14, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a book to be read, re-read, and then read once again. Ackerman's views of nature are enlightening, informative, and spiritually transcendental. Having read the book, I looked at daily miracles in a new way, using the scientific knowledge she incorporates to better understand things I'd before taken forgranted. I gave my copy of the book to my daughter who shares my delight in nature. I know I will buy myself another copy for a second and third read.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By William Suddaby on March 22, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Acute and thoughtful observations of the natural world sprinkled with encyclopedic tidbits of languages and distant cultures. Sometimes the over-flowery descriptions clutter clarity and meaning: "...sky whitens to a talcy mask, the exquisite monotony of birdcalls thins to an insistent boy soprano fading into the distance" p. 120. But in the end there is a gentle light under the overload of words.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Florence M. Laprath on December 30, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is an elegant and beautifully written book. The author has gift for observation that is profound. The reader can expect to learn much about the first light of day. The research behind the various aspects of this book is extensive. Diane Ackerman is to be applauded for this treatise on the beginning of each and every day.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Vickie Wyatt on October 21, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Beautiful words. Words that make you slow down and savor --- the words themselves, the phrases, and the pictures and feelings they evoke. I've been fighting with myself since the moment I finished the very first essay.

I'm only allowing myself an essay a day, and when I finished the first day's reading, I had a little leap of joy in my heart, picturing myself sharing the book. Normally, that's what I do --- pass a book along when I have finished reading it. (So many books, so little time. I rarely read one twice. Better it should move along to its next reader than gather dust on my shelf.) But, right after the leap, a backtracking, a remembering of the times when I have had to buy a replacement book for one that called me back to double check a quote or lesson. I'm afraid I'm going to have to keep this one.

And thus the battle began. To share, or not to share.....
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Judy Joy on November 30, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a book that I want to share with all my friends and family. I have already given it to quite a few and recommended it to many.Diane Ackerman was introduced to me many years ago when my daughter was reading Moon by Whale Light. She said it was the kind of book that, after every few pages, you want to go shake someone by the shoulder and say, " Hey, listen to this!" Dawn Light is that kind of book too. Diane Ackerman's delight in the world of nature and art is truly inspirational. Her exuberance reminds one of the beauty that surrounds us if we would only stop to look and listen to the natural world and to the world of art. She is a national treasure.
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