As a child, I used to watch a lot of nature documentaries, particularly one called The Realm of the Russian Bear, which also featured beautiful Siberian tigers. I was obsessed with their grace and beauty, and their power.
The Great Soul of Siberia filled me with the glee I felt as a child, seeing those striped elegant creatures glide through the snow.
Sooyung Park has been studying and following tigers in the Ussuri region of Russia for over 20 years. Not only is this book an ode to the great cats he built his life around, but it is a biography of the region, its people and their culture.
His prose is gentle, respectful, elegant, and had me in tears a number of times, wishing with him that these beautiful animals can survive a seemingly impending extinction. There are some real heart-in-the-mouth moments when you realise how flimsy Park’s hides are, especially when the tigers start to notice.
Honestly, this is a beautiful piece of nature writing that encompasses Russian politics and the art of film making.
Interested? Get it here.
What to read next:
- Fingers in the Sparkle Jar by Chris Packham
- Leviathan by Philip Hoare
- H is for Hawk by Helen McDonald
Thank you kindly to Harper Collins & William Collins for sharing this copy with me.