"A fast-paced page-turner and a unique adventure story . . . filled with insights about landscapes, people, and a world of wonderful birds."―Kenn Kaufman, author of Kingbird Highway
An epic tale of one passionate birder's record-breaking adventure through 40 countries over 6 continents--in just one year--to see 6,852 bird species, rare and common, before many go extinct.
When Arjan Dwarshuis first heard of the "Big Year"--the legendary record for birdwatching--he was twenty years old, it was midnight, and he was sitting on the roof of a truck in the Andean Mountains. In that moment he promised himself that, someday, somehow, he would become a world-record-holding birder.
Ten years later, he embarked on an incredible, arduous, and perilous journey that took him around the globe; over uninhabited islands, through dense unforgiving rainforests, across snowy mountain peaks and unrelenting deserts--in just a single year. Would he survive? Would he be able to break the "Big Year" record, navigating through a world filled with shifting climate and geopolitical challenges?
The (Big) Year that Flew By is an unforgettable, personal exploration of the limits of human potential when engaging with the natural world. It is a book about birds and birding and Arjan's attempts to raise awareness for critically endangered species, but it is also a book about overcoming mental challenges, extreme physical danger, and human competition and fully realizing your passions through nature, adventure, and conservation.
"Dwarshius' exhilarating race against time across 40 countries and 6 continents in his attempt to break the world record will thrill armchair readers and bird enthusiasts alike."―Booklist
"I sped through this] book, trying to ignore feelings of jealousy as Dwarshuis described moments with species I've dreamed of seeing."--The Washington Post