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The Missing Musk

Hardcover / ISBN-13: 9781529355970

Price: £20

ON SALE: 11th May 2023

Genre: Lifestyle, Sport & Leisure / Natural History

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‘Utterly fascinating and intriguing’ Neil Ansell, author of The Last Wilderness

‘A captivating dive into the mysteries of nature’ Lee Schofield, author of Wild Fell

In 1913 all the musk plants in the world stopped smelling. Unable to resist the lure of this mystery, Bob Gilbert turns detective, determined to find the truth in the tale. Mixing history, memoir, science and nature writing, The Missing Musk takes the reader on a journey of discovery, uncovering the truth behind six mysteries and myths from across the natural world.

From the darkest corners of Britain’s churchyards to Scotland’s Pentland Hills, Bob travels the length of the UK, seeking answers to questions that have intrigued him throughout his life. In search of the musk’s long-lost fragrance, he discovers a possibly murderous story. Investigating the true origins of ‘star jelly’ leads to encounters with unexplained sightings and substances. Faced with the urban myth-like stories of mosquitoes thriving in the London Underground, Bob digs deeper.

Motivated by the curious, unexplained phenomena found in wild places and on urban streets, Bob peers into microscopes, delves into horticultural archives and chases a glimpse of the strange ‘water bear’, finding that, when it comes to mysteries, the joy is found as much in the search as in the answer it leads you to . . .

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A brilliantly researched investigation into some of nature's most enduring mysteries. Never less than utterly fascinating and intriguing
Neil Ansell, author of THE LAST WILDERNESS
The Missing Musk is a joyful celebration of intelligent curiosity. Absorbing, fascinating, and a positive invitation to explore the natural world around us
Lev Parikian, author of INTO THE TANGLED BANK
Impeccably researched and endlessly fascinating, The Missing Musk is a captivating dive into the mysteries of nature
Lee Schofield, author of WILD FELL
A joyous hymn to the urban wild
Patrick Barkham, author of <i>Wild Green Wonders</i>
Profoundly uplifting
Lyrical and beautifully evocative . . . A delight
BBC Countryfile Magazine
Gilbert weaves his vast knowledge lightly and shares it engagingly and entertainingly
Caught by the River
Meticulously researched, thought-provoking and enlightening, The Missing Musk is a perfect mix of whodunnit and wonder for the natural world. A truly unique, fun and inspirational book that dispels common myths without detracting from the wonder of its subject
James Aldred, author of GOSHAWK SUMMER
Brimful of fascinating observations and beautifully written, this is a wonderfully engaging book
Simple Things Magazine
The Missing Musk is not really about finding answers, but challenging the systems that govern our thinking . . . we are asked to celebrate the "confusions and contradictions" of nature, acknowledging what we cannot know while valuing all perspectives, from the metaphysical to the biological
Kate Simpson, Times Literary Supplement