Nature Books – 2015 List


Nature Book Project 2015 @handbookofnaturestudy

Along with my new Nature Study Goals for 2015, I am determined to read more books to fuel my learning about the natural world around me. I have gleaned a few books from my shelves that I need to read or reread but the rest are brand spanking new from I spent an afternoon just rabbit trailing around Amazon, putting stacks of books onto my wishlist. to consider for the final 2015 list.

I picked ten books altogether so if I slack a bit somewhere I can make it up during the two unscheduled months. I have decided to leave July and December free for just that purpose.


I imagine I will pick up and put down several of these over the year but I will try to have completed the reading by the designated time. Creating a blog entry at the end of each book will detail my thoughts and perhaps even inspire you to pick it up and read it in the future. If you own any of these books and would like to comment on your experience with the book, you can join me in the appropriate month and corresponding blog entry.

I have already started reading The Wild Muir aloud to my husband a little each day. It is fun to share these stories aloud and comment on his adventures. Stay tuned for some of my thoughts!

Please note the entry includes affiliate links.


  1. I read Last Child in the Woods in 2010. It’s a great book and helped me find your blog, because I started looking for ideas to incorporate nature study into my homeschool.

    • Barb McCoy says:

      It is a great motivating book for parents. I am going to read it again to glean some new inspiration! Cristy I am so glad you found my blog and I have been able to get to know your family through your nature study. :)

  2. What a great idea! I have “read 4 classics” and “read 150 books” on my 101 things in 1001 days list, but I had not thought about putting down something for nature books. I guess I will have to incorporate them into my longer list. I have already read “Last Child in the Woods” and I’ve also read “The Wilderness World of John Muir”. Both very good as I recall.

    “The Forest Unseen” looks fantastic, I will have to see if I can find that one. I have “Keeping a Nature Journal” on my bookshelf. I’ll have to get it out and read it in time for your review.

    I bought myself a couple of new books at Christmas that have to do with hiking the AT. One is “Barefoot Sisters Southbound” and the other is “Skywalker”. I don’t have plans to hike the AT, but I love reading about it.

    Great idea and great books!

    • Barb McCoy says:

      I read the Bill Bryson book on the AT but I decided there is more of a chance that I will actually do a big section of the John Muir Trail in my future so I picked something to encourage me in my efforts to make that dream come true. :)

      So what classics are thinking you are going to read?

      • I have recently finished “A Tale of Two Cities” and “Emma”. I enjoyed them both. I’m not sure what will be next for a classic, so if you have any ideas, please let me know.

        As a separate item on my list I have “read a book by Sir Walter Scott. My kids read Ivanhoe a couple of years ago for a book club and I said I would read it, too, but never did. I may start with “Rob Roy” or a Waverley though. (I have information that Scott was a friend of my great-great-great grandfather, so I feel a connection).


    • Barb McCoy says:

      We couldn’t make it through Rob Roy…it is a hard one. I tend to like more “American” classics like those from Mark Twain. I totally enjoyed rereading the Anne of Green Gables series last year (not sure if that is a classic but still fun reading). I also like just about anything that Jules Verne wrote and something a little more dark like Frankenstein or The Invisible Man is fun sometimes. The great thing is that you start something and if after a few chapters you don’t like it you can put it aside and try something else. I love self directed learning.

      • There are plenty of American Classics that I want to read, although I had been saving them to go with our study of US History next year. Of course, there are so many, I probably should start now and that will help me choose what I want my son to read.

        Love Jules Verne and H.G. Wells. We’ve read many of their books. We did do Frankenstein, but that was one of those ones that we thought a lot could have been cut out and the story still would have held up.


  3. You are such an inspiration! ;I had been looking at various blogs trying to get an idea for my 2015 reading list and always came away empty. The idea of reading 12 nature books is very appealing!! I have one by Rachel Carson (By the Edge of the Sea) and The Last Child in the Woods so I am off to a good start. When I find my other 10 will leave you a note, I like a few on your list too!!

  4. I love your list! The Last Child in the Woods is one of my favourite books.
    I am going to add some of these titles, or at least a few nature related books to my to-read books. Thank you for being so inspiring :)

    • Barb McCoy says:

      I’m sure you have some books that would fit your habitat that might be interesting for you…wish I could visit!

  5. thank you so much for this list! I have similar feelings and goals, and funny thing, I ordered The Wild Muir right after Christmas and have been savoring it since then. That guy was nuts!

    • Barb McCoy says:

      For my husband and I, we are enjoying reading about so many of the places we have explored and know at Yosemite. Love his point of view and yes, he was a little nuts.

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