The Wildlife Garden – John Lewis-Stempel
Paperback: 176 pages
Publisher: How To Books (6 Mar. 2014)
Price £8.99 or £5,99 (Kindle)
I have read a number of books by John Lewis-Stempel and enjoyed them. Several reviews can be found here. (That’s the book review page I started but didn’t continue. Two of his books are there.)
This is a comprehensive book and covers everything that you could possibly want in a clear and concise manner – garden design, ponds, lists of plants and notes on wildlife. If someone gave it to me I’d be happy to have it. If all you had to work from was this book you could produce an excellent wildlife garden, though a few more diagrams of feeders and shelters might be a help.
My problem is that I don’t feel the price represents value for money. £8.99 is a lot of money for a small book. After all, the information is available on the net and there are diagrams to go with it. You can also generally pick up illustrated books on the subject from charity shops for under £2.
I might be showing my age here, or my ignorance of the book trade, but £8.99 for a thin paperback, or £5.99 for an electronic version, just doesn’t seem like value for money. I know the worth of a book isn’t measured in its size, but I also know that the buying public (which includes me) is thought to buy on that basis. That’s why you sometimes find yourself reading a book with plenty of white space and a larger than usual font – they are trying to bulk it up.
Though my first impression was of thin book, my second was of a thin book that seems to have a Monarch butterfly on the cover – a rare migrant to the UK. I’d have preferred a proper British butterfly. I’m not impressed by that.
So what do you say? I like the author and the book is packed with information. I just think it’s over-priced compared to other sources of the same information.
Buy it by all means, but buy it as cheaply as possible.