The Lost Words by Robert Macfarlane

The Lost Words

From Acorn to Weasel: a gorgeous, hand-illustrated, large-format spellbook celebrating the magic and wonder of the natural worldAll over the country, there are words disappearing from children's lives. Words like Dandelion, Otter, Bramble, Acorn and Lark represent the natural world of childhood, a rich landscape of discovery and imagination that is fading from children's m...

Title:The Lost Words
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Edition Language:English

The Lost Words Reviews

  • Paul

    Gone are the days when children’s alphabets would begin with A is for Acorn, B is for butterfly and C is for caterpillar. Now days it is likely to be A is for Acer, B is for Blackberry and C is for Cisco. Back in 2015, The Oxford University Press dropped around 50 words that were drawn from the natural world from the latest edition of its Junior dictionary; they argued that it was less relevant as children were spending less time outside and were glued to the screen of a tablet or phone. The ala

    Gone are the days when children’s alphabets would begin with A is for Acorn, B is for butterfly and C is for caterpillar. Now days it is likely to be A is for Acer, B is for Blackberry and C is for Cisco. Back in 2015, The Oxford University Press dropped around 50 words that were drawn from the natural world from the latest edition of its Junior dictionary; they argued that it was less relevant as children were spending less time outside and were glued to the screen of a tablet or phone. The alarm that this caused was quite noticeable, authors such as Morpurgo, Attwood and Maitland wrote to the OUP asking for them to be reinstated in the dictionary.

    One of the other signatories to the letter was Robert Macfarlane. He has been collecting words on and about the natural world for many years and if you follow his Twitter feed you will see him post a new word every day expounding the delights of the world around us. But he was in a position to do something else about it too. Words that had been floating away in the air like seeds from a dandelion clock have been found and rehomed in this sumptuous book written by Macfarlane and the artist Jackie Morris; The Lost Words.

    It is not a long book, the spells written by Macfarlane (he claims that he is not a poet, but he is wrong) has a resonance that is soothing and salient at the same time as well as having their roots deep in the natural world. It is the pictures that make this book really special though; Morris’s art for this book is richly portrayed, full of energy and life, there are letters that swirl across a page, she has captured the steely look from a raven and the blur of a kingfisher just perfectly. It is primarily a book for children, but many others will find solace in the way that it seeks to lead people back into the natural world make this such a special book to possess.

  • Lyndsay

    I wasn't sure what to expect with this book, it arrived this morning and I was quite surprised at the sheer size of it. It is around A3 in size but after reading it the beauty of it couldn't be shown in anything smaller in my opinion. It's not a book heavy in words, but Robert Macfarlane's Acrostic Poetry is divine and Jackie Morris' Artwork in the book is beyond words.

    The message of the book is clear , children are losing the "wild streak" and nature and it's beauty are being forgotten. My chil

    I wasn't sure what to expect with this book, it arrived this morning and I was quite surprised at the sheer size of it. It is around A3 in size but after reading it the beauty of it couldn't be shown in anything smaller in my opinion. It's not a book heavy in words, but Robert Macfarlane's Acrostic Poetry is divine and Jackie Morris' Artwork in the book is beyond words.

    The message of the book is clear , children are losing the "wild streak" and nature and it's beauty are being forgotten. My children sat enthralled in it as we talked about what the message was and why it's important to run in the grass and notice & care for our natural surroundings and the creatures that live within it before they are lost completely.

    If you are after a novel or a good chunky read , This is not the book to pick .... this is simply a large piece of beautiful Poetry & Artwork with a message that needs to be heard in this technology heavy age. Thoroughly Loved it !!

  • Beth  Bennett

    Wow. Absolutely stunning, both words and illustrations. Deserves more than 5 stars.

    It is a shame that these words that were part of my countryside childhood have become lost to the children of today. It is quite scary.

    This work of art is sublime. The empty spaces speak volumes and truly complement the art work throughout.

    The spells are composed and sound magical when read aloud, as intended. Yes, I did verbalise them.

    This is a book I shall return to again and again.

  • Sarah

    This is one of the most beautiful, breathtaking books I have ever had the pleasure to read and own. It is absolutely impossible not to pour over these pages, taking in every minute, perfectly captured detail of Jackie Morris' illustrations or to read over and over the accompanying acrostic poems. This truly is a spellbinding spell book. The choice of vocabulary is meticulous and precise. Reading them made my heart race and brought tears to my eyes, so moved was I by the beauty. Everyone must rea

    This is one of the most beautiful, breathtaking books I have ever had the pleasure to read and own. It is absolutely impossible not to pour over these pages, taking in every minute, perfectly captured detail of Jackie Morris' illustrations or to read over and over the accompanying acrostic poems. This truly is a spellbinding spell book. The choice of vocabulary is meticulous and precise. Reading them made my heart race and brought tears to my eyes, so moved was I by the beauty. Everyone must read this book at least once in their lives.

  • Nick Swarbrick

    I’ve praised this rich and imaginative collaboration a lot: this

    was my latest. Five stars.

  • BrookesEducationLibrary

    This book is absolutely stunning! Jackie Morris' art work is so beautiful and Robert Macfarlane's spell poems really do sound so magical when read aloud!

    We feel like this is a particularly important book because we do need our children of today to grow up outside, exploring and enjoying nature, the last page does state that a proportion of the each books royalties are donated to 'Action for Conservation, a charity dedicated to inspiring young people to take action for the natural world...'

    This

    This book is absolutely stunning! Jackie Morris' art work is so beautiful and Robert Macfarlane's spell poems really do sound so magical when read aloud!

    We feel like this is a particularly important book because we do need our children of today to grow up outside, exploring and enjoying nature, the last page does state that a proportion of the each books royalties are donated to 'Action for Conservation, a charity dedicated to inspiring young people to take action for the natural world...'

    This book definitely isn't only for children though, everyone and anyone will enjoy reading this book from cover to cover, it only took us half an hour and we're going to keep returning to this!

    Our favourite was the newt spell! :)

  • John Ollerton

    A thing of true Beauty.

  • Penelope

    A spellbinding piece of publishing which is a feast for both the ears and the eyes. A beautiful book which should be pored over, treasured and read aloud when ever the opportunity arises. Robert's words and Jackie's illustrations conjure up a natural world that we should all long to be part of, one filled with mystery, wonder and enchantment. It saddens me so that this world is one much unknown by the younger generations but perhaps this book can act as a gateway to entice them in. Pick up a cop

    A spellbinding piece of publishing which is a feast for both the ears and the eyes. A beautiful book which should be pored over, treasured and read aloud when ever the opportunity arises. Robert's words and Jackie's illustrations conjure up a natural world that we should all long to be part of, one filled with mystery, wonder and enchantment. It saddens me so that this world is one much unknown by the younger generations but perhaps this book can act as a gateway to entice them in. Pick up a copy of this book, speak the enchanting words aloud, let your eyes trace the glorious illustrations and who knows what magic may happen!

  • Miss Lynham

    Highly recommend!!

    This book is simply stunning!! I have to admit I am in love with the beauty of this book.

    I was privileged to meet the illustrator Jackie Morris at an event held at my local Waterstones last night. It was lovely to hear the powerful story behind the book, how it came to be.

    As a book lover I am always keen to share books but with this one I find myself wanting to share it with everyone I meet. It’s beautifully written and illustrated. The pictures and spells (poems) work in perf

    Highly recommend!!

    This book is simply stunning!! I have to admit I am in love with the beauty of this book.

    I was privileged to meet the illustrator Jackie Morris at an event held at my local Waterstones last night. It was lovely to hear the powerful story behind the book, how it came to be.

    As a book lover I am always keen to share books but with this one I find myself wanting to share it with everyone I meet. It’s beautifully written and illustrated. The pictures and spells (poems) work in perfect harmony.

    As a teacher I can’t wait to use it in the classroom - I know it is going to be such a great stimulus and there are so many ideas already flitting through my mind. (Apparently there are some teachers notes in progress, so teachers keep your eyes peeled.)

    However I should point out that this book is not age limited! It’s beauty and charm can be enjoyed by all ages. I’d like to share it as much with my Gran as with my class of pupils. I will be telling all my friends about this book for certain.

    It certainly feels like a very special book and I know I will treasure it!

  • Alice Lippart

    Absolutely gorgeous.

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