Book Attracts International Praise

Cassowary crop

Tim Low’s most recent book, Where Song Began continues to attract strong interest. An international edition was published by Yale University Press in late 2016.

In February it received strong praise from Tim Flannery, in a very long review in the The New York Review of Books, which ends with this:

Where Song Began provides a novel interpretation of Australia's avifauna that will enrich the understanding of anyone interested in birds. As a professional biologist familiar with much of its matter I found myself astonished again and again." 

It December 2016 it was reviewed in Britain's Literary Review, which described it as an Illuminating and engaging study.

In a review in BBC Wildlife magazine, leading bird author Jonathan Elphick was very approving: "I discovered revelations in each of these 12 chapters. The book is written by a biologist with a gift for translating complex scientific research into riveting prose.”

In November 2016 the book was reviewed in America's Bird Watcher's Digest, earning this praise: 

“Books about ecology and evolutionary biology are rarely so entertaining and engrossing, but Low is a story-teller, and nearly every page offers a compelling, often shocking, story.”  

In October it received a recommendation from the editors of Scientific American

In September the Open Letters Monthly declared it "one of the best works of natural history to appear all year."

Other reviews have appeared in Canada and Costa Rica.

Yale obtained strong endorsements for the book from experts in the US and Britain, including the following:

“Tim Low masterfully tells a story not told before. He provides an elegant synthesis of the scientific literature and a panoramic view of how Australia's songbirds originated; the ecological and behavioral forces leading to their uniqueness; and ultimately their far-reaching impacts across the globe.”—Scott Edwards, Harvard University

“On visiting Australia years ago, I struggled to understand bird behaviour I observed. This is the book I needed then, an erudite but accessible insight into why Australia’s birds are ‘different.’”—Robert Prys-Jones, Head of Bird Group, Natural History Museum (London)

The book continues to sell strongly in Australia.

At the Australian Book Industry Awards dinner in Sydney in 2015, it won the prize for best non-fiction of the year.  

The ABIA summed up Tim's win in these words:

"Biologist and prize-winning writer Tim Low took out General Non Fiction Book of the Year at the Australian Book Industry Awards on Thursday 21 May 2015 for his intriguing book Where Song Began. Up against the likes of Don Watson, Annabel Crabb and Helen Garner, Tim’s win marks the first time a nature book has won this competitive category."

This is the second major prize for the book. By a margin of hundreds of votes it won the People's Choice Award at the Victorian Premier's Literary Awards earlier that year. The following day the book was shortlisted for the Indie Book Awards, run by Australia's independent booksellers.

Since the book appeared Tim has received invitations to speak at bird festivals and other events all over Australia.

Further details about the book and its reception can be found here.    

Where Song Began Sydney Airport







Orang-Utan-2017Tim Low will be a guide on Borneo in September this year. On behalf of British company Naturetrek he will lead a 10 day tour to Sabah's best wildlife destinations. 

Tim first visited Borneo decades ago when he hitch-hiked on a logging truck to camp in rainforest to see orang-utans, gibbons, and other wildife.

He has spent more than a year in Asia altogether getting to know its super-diverse wildlife.

Tim Low's prize-winning book The New Nature, has been republished by Penguin. Tim wrote a new preface to bring the book up to date. An extract was published in the colour magazine of the Weekend Australian on 21-22 January. Tim was interviewed about the book on ABC TV News Breakfast and by the ABC's Richard Fidler. That interview can be heard or downloaded here.

In May Tim will appear at the Northern Territory Writer's Festival in Alice Springs and in July he will speak at the Science at the Local event at Springwood in the Blue Mountains.

In September he will be a wildlife guide running a tour in Borneo on behalf of British company Naturetrek. The tour will visit Danum Valley, the Kinabatangan River and other premier destinations.

In late February Tim was interviewed about birds at length by the ABC's David Curnow: The interview can be heard here.

In March Tim was opening keynote speaker at the Rainforests of Subtropical Australia symposium on the Gold Coast.

He recently wrote a contribution for a book, Eat the Problem, to be published in 2017 by the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA). He also co-authored a chapter for an upcoming book about the Big Scrub in northern New South Wales, and wrote the foreword for a book about spiders to be published soon by the CSIRO.

Over the past two years he has been a major contributor to Wildlife Australia magazine. Articles he wrote for Australian Geographic magazine will appear in 2017.

In 2016 he traveled in every mainland state undertaking research for his next book and worked on the first three chapters.

For the past year he has written a blog called Wild Journey for Australian Geographic magazine. Published twice every month, the blog highlights something surprising about wildlife in Australia. One he wrote about animal names that are assumed to be but are not Aboriginal - such as emu, cockatoo and bandicoot - led to ten radio interviews about the topic.   

Tim Low and Victorian Premier

Tim Low with Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews (Photo: Matt Deller)



Tim Low is cited in a new publication, Managing Australia’s biodiversity in a changing climate, the final report of the inquiry into Australia’s biodiversity in a changing climate, produced by the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Climate Change, Environment and the Arts. His submission to the inquiry was the only one by an environmental consultant to be cited, for his comments about the relative benefits of refugia and corridors.

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