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How to Be a Good Creature: A Memoir in Thirteen Animals

How to Be a Good Creature: A Memoir in Thirteen Animals

Written by Sy Montgomery

Narrated by Sy Montgomery


How to Be a Good Creature: A Memoir in Thirteen Animals

Written by Sy Montgomery

Narrated by Sy Montgomery

ratings:
4/5 (65 ratings)
Length:
3 hours
Released:
Sep 25, 2018
ISBN:
9781684414130
Format:
Audiobook

Also available as...

BookSnapshot

Also available as...

BookSnapshot

Description

Understanding someone who belongs to another species can be transformative. No one knows this better than author, naturalist, and adventurer Sy Montgomery. To research her books, Sy has traveled the world and encountered some of the planet's rarest and most beautiful animals. From tarantulas to tigers, Sy's life continually intersects with and is informed by the creatures she meets.

This restorative memoir reflects on the personalities and quirks of 13 animals — Sy's friends — and the truths revealed by their grace. It also explores vast themes: the otherness and sameness of people and animals; the various ways we learn to love and become empathetic; how we find our passion; how we create our families; coping with loss and despair; gratitude; forgiveness; and most of all, how to be a good creature in the world.

Released:
Sep 25, 2018
ISBN:
9781684414130
Format:
Audiobook

Also available as...

BookSnapshot


About the author

Sy Montgomery is a naturalist, documentary scriptwriter, and author of twenty acclaimed books of nonfiction for adults and children, including the National Book Award finalist The Soul of an Octopus and the memoir The Good Good Pig, a New York Times bestseller. The recipient of numerous honors, including lifetime achievement awards from the Humane Society and the New England Booksellers Association, she lives in New Hampshire with her husband, border collie, and flock of chickens.


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What people think about How to Be a Good Creature

4.2
65 ratings / 9 Reviews
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Reader reviews

  • (5/5)
    What a delightful book this is. Not only does Ms Montgomery share her love of all creatures with us but it is beautifully illustrated by Rebecca Green. Even the illustration for each chapter heading is individual. As a person who shared 16 years with a border collie I am, of course, bound to be enchanted by a book that includes stories about not just one or two border collies but three. And I have to bow down in awe to a woman who manages to write twenty-six books while keeping a border collie fully amused and exercised. My Gypsy rode herd on my husband and I, a cat, another dog and still had energy to burn. However, this book doesn't just chronicle the author's experiences with dogs. She also had a pet pig and not one of those cute little pot-bellied pigs; this was a pig that grew to 750 pounds. She raised chickens but since she is a vegetarian they too were pets. And then there were the more exotic animals she formed friendships with: three emus in the outback of Australia, tree kangaroos in Papua New Guinea, a tarantula in South America that she called Clarabelle and on and on. From each animal the author learned important lessons and no doubt will continue to learn more.If you have ever had a pet you loved then this is a book that will speak to you.
  • (5/5)
    Welch ein wunderbares Buch. Die Autorin beschreibt ihr Leben mit Tieren, Tiere die sie erforscht, Tiere die sie als Haustiere hält, Tiere denen sie begegnet. Immer ist ihr persönliches Erleben Thema, wie sie die Tiere erlebt, was sie empfindet, was die Tiere ihr bedeuten. Gerade diese persönliche Note hat mir sehr gut gefallen.Dann habe ich anschließend von ihr das Buch "Vom magischen Leuchten des Glühwürmchens bei Mitternacht" gelesen und war sehr enttäuscht. Denn dort fehlt das persönliche fast vollkommen und übrig bleibt ein Sammelsurium an Naturbeobachtungen.
  • (5/5)
    Animals know and feel so much more the we can ever understand.
  • (5/5)
    How to be a Good Creature by Sy Montgomery and also narrated by the author is a book that just makes you feel so good! I am a but animal loved and I could relate to her stories much. It didn't sound like she had the best family life but her love for her dog was a saving grace. Later her love for animals spread to all kinds of creatures and she explains how they helped her and she loved them. I laughed, related, and cried throughout this book! I was a mess! I could do all of these in one chapter! Her love just shines through! I have listened to another of her books so I knew how wonderful, tender, and insightful she is in her books. I can't wait to read more! As a narrator, it was nice to hear her true emotions as she told her adventures. It really brought the story closer to the reader.
  • (4/5)
    The book is very heatfelt and vivid in the descriptions of the animals and experiences in her life.
  • (5/5)
    Perfectly delightful, as usual, it serves as a reminder of some of Sy's other wonderful books as she relates stories of some of the creatures in her books along with the wonderful stories of Molly, Tess, and Thurber.
  • (4/5)
    This memoir explores the author's relationship with the animals that have shaped her life. From a huge pet pig, to emus in the wild, from a tarantula to border collies, she loves these animals deeply and they have impacted the way she she's the world.
  • (3/5)
    I didn't really enjoy this book. Probably 10% of the book focused on a spider, and I found that to be a big turnoff for me.She also explained in depth how much she wanted to kill herself when two of her animals died in close succession. That was too much for me. I enjoyed her book, "Soul of an Octopus," much more.
  • (5/5)
    I’m an unabashed animal lover/nutcase with three furkids of my own—of the kind that remains relatively unmoved at the sight of adorable babies, but goes absolutely nutters over dogs, cats, elephants, cows, horses, pigs, frogs, spiders, bears, beetles, bees, marsupials, octopuses, whales, mice, and just about any non-human critter living on this planet (except for roaches and mosquitoes ?). As such, I absolutely love Sy Montgomery’s books, who’s passion for animals is positively infectious. She has dedicated her life to researching them and travelled the world to encounter countless known and rare species to write about them. This, her latest charmingly illustrated book, came about when an interviewer asked her what lessons animals taught Sy about herself, and her almost immediate answer came: “How to be a good creature”. Here she briefly talks about 13 different critters she has encountered in her lifetime who taught her important life lessons: from her first dog, Molly, a Scottish terrier adopted when she was 3 and which she strove to emulate in every way to her mother’s great despair; a threesome of emu siblings which she undertook to study to satisfy her own burning curiosity as to their habits in the Australian outback; Christopher Hogwood, a pig she adopted as a runt so sick and small he had few chances of survival and who grew to become a 750 lbs “Buddha master” and the subject of her bestselling book “The Good Good Pig” when he passed after a very contented life, aged 14; Clarabelle, an Avicularia, or large species of tarantula with distinguishable pink footpads and a friendly personality encountered on a trip in French Guiana; Tess, Sally and Thurber, border collies who became irreplaceable members of the family; an octopus named Octavia who was also the fascinating subject of an excellent standalone book, called “The Soul of an Octopus”, to name a few. If you’ve never read a book by this author, this is a great way to get acquainted with her work. If you’ve already read and enjoyed some of Montgomery’s books, “How To Be a Good Creature” will get you better acquainted with Sy Montgomery and introduce you to several creatures you likely haven’t met before, or you’ll surely find some new anecdotes to smile at or sympathize with. Another part of the book I really liked was the For Further Reading section, where Montgomery lists ten books that inspired her to start studying and writing about the natural world. Highly recommend, naturally.