Questions Raised by Quolls by Harry Saddler [7/10]

Harry Saddler is one of those pure-hearted autodidacts you would love to know and chat with, but never can find. Reading his books, indeed plugging into his Twitter feed, is an undiluted pleasure. ”Questions Raised by Quolls: Fatherhood and Conservation in an Uncertain World“ is a far-ranging digression on matters existential and conservation-related, anchored by his investigations into Australia’s quolls. Quolls, short-lived, carnivorous mammals now close to extinction, sound fascinating (I’ve never seen one) and the author traces their near-extirpation through chronicling his family’s history and investigating conservation efforts. Another persistent thread is his earnest, almost plaintive pondering on whether to pursue fatherhood in the fraught Anthropocene era. Saddler is a natural, easy stylist, and his control of the narrative is sweet to experience. The natural world comes to life on the pages of Questions Raised by Quolls, a beguiling book I heartily recommend.

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