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Birding on Borrowed Time First Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
For anyone interested in birds this is a must read; others will enjoy reading the well written adventures of an intrepid lady.
Tragically, Phoebe was killed in a bus accident in Madagascar about 2 years ago, shortly after seeing one of her most wanted birds, a red-shouldered vanga.
In this, Snetsinger's autobiography, she is focused more on her birding, her world travels to see the 8,400+ species she found, and some of the reasons and motivations for her accomplishments. Gentile's book details more of Snetsinger's background, family life, and suppositions for her behavior.
I personally found this book the more interesting of the two as I am more interested in world travel and birding. I wanted to know what it would be like if you had the time and money (like Snetsinger)to go wherever you wanted what that life could be like. I appreciated the detail of the travels to Peru, India, Kenya, Australia, Papau New Guinea, rather than the family information presented in Gentile's biography, although other readers that are not interested in birding may find that book more readable.
While she recounts some of her personal life and some of her birding exploits, her memoir is surprisingly cursory in both. If a reader wanted a fuller account of her personal trials and tribulations, the reader would be better off reading Olivia Gentile's 'Life List: A Woman's Quest for the World's Most Amazing Birds'. On her birding, Snetsinger captures the fun of identifying species, as well as the challenge and hard work that makes a difficult identification so rewarding and satisfying. She describes the ambivalent feelings of birders with the triumph at having finally seen and identified a species, yet the sadness that it "now no more there to look for". Nevertheless, with exceptions such as her account of breaking her wrist while in the Philippines and continuing to bird for weeks, much of her account is a list of where and when she saw which birds.
It is rewarding to know where she birded and to dream of going to some of those places with the hope of seeing even a fraction of what she saw. For this reason and because she did "go down binoculars in hand", it is worth reading 'Birding On Borrowed Time'.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very little info on birds. A lot about how expensive and difficult competitive birding is.Published 2 months ago by garden girl
I absolutely loved this book. I started reading Birding on Borrowed Time's Kindle edition because I liked the idea of a woman pioneering international birding, but I kept reading... Read morePublished 16 months ago by Erika Z.
Liked it-- didn't love it. After a while the names of all the birds were funny.Published 17 months ago by Jbfrit
Phoebe Snetsinger's memoirs, which I bought because I had read Life List, a biography of her life. I bought it used and it was in good condition.Published on February 9, 2014 by Twicker
I enjoyed this book for the descriptions of birding trips around the world and the birds themselves. However, I was completely turned-off by the author. Read morePublished on August 20, 2013 by travelbonnie