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This reviewer has to confess to certain bias — David Edelsten has long been a valued hunting correspondent for H&H, and his chatty, accessible style makes it easy to devour chunks of his book in great gulps.

His abiding love of animals — dogs, cats, horses, rabbits, pheasants, some recalcitrant sheep and a bat “hanging like a smashed umbrella” — shimmers along every line, as does his sheer joy in the countryside about which he writes so evocatively.

He describes every season with deft passion, but the hunting chapters — “I warn those who do not approve of it that the final quarter . . . is devoted to hunting: at the same time, I beg them . . . to read on,” he says in his foreword — reveal his first love.

Perhaps if they read this book, those who “do not approve” may well change their minds, or at least try “to understand and to respect” those that do, as David Edelsten suggests.

Published by Halsgrove (ISBN 1841144827)

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