THE SEAL SUMMER by Nina Warner Hooke


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The Gavin Maxwell audience should find its way to this record of a seal summer. There is the same thoughtful approach to the meaning of an animal's free spirit and the close observation of people in relation to wild life and so on. Sammy was a grey seal who showed up on the shore of Chapman's Pool in Dorset, England near the author's home. He must have been about 18 months old according to the experts, and uncharacteristically for its kind, curious about people. Within a few days, he had conquered his last reserve and was frolicking on the beach with children and adults as affectionately as a pup and very gently. The locals and the visitors became as fond of him as he appeared to be of them. The author, however, brought a depth of significance and insight into his unusual camaraderie. She offers the lore of the seal as it has been handed down in the Hebrides; she discusses the small output of research on the animal that has been considered more of a fishermen's pest than a mammal with secrets to render up to science. Herself an amateur naturalist, her lively and thoughtful essays on Sammy the Seal's brief visit will appeal to other armchair naturalists.

Pub Date: Feb. 24th, 1965
Publisher: Harcourt, Brace & World