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By: John Muir (1838-1914)

The Mountains of California by John Muir The Mountains of California

First published in 1894, this wonderful travelogue by a famed naturalist and conservationist still remains a book that delights and informs its readers. The Mountains of California by John Muir recounts the author's exploration of the Yosemite Valley, Mount Whitney, the famed sequoia forests and King's Canyon among other places of immense natural beauty. Written in his characteristic zestful style, with a deep understanding and respect for nature, the book is a treasure trove of geography, geology, botany, biology and sheer love of the magical planet we live in...

My First Summer in the Sierra by John Muir My First Summer in the Sierra

The journal of nature-lover John Muir who spent the summer of 1869 walking California’s Sierra Nevada range. From French Bar to Mono Lake and the Yosemite Valley, Muir was awestruck by everything he saw. The antics of the smallest “insect people” amazed him as much as stunted thousand-year old Juniper trees growing with inconceivable tenacity from tiny cracks in the stone. Muir spent the rest of his life working to preserve the high Sierra, believing that “the clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.” John Muir (1838-1914) was born in Dunbar, Scotland and grew up in Wisconsin, USA. This recording commemorates the 140th anniversary of that first summer.

Travels in Alaska by John Muir Travels in Alaska

In 1879 John Muir went to Alaska for the first time. Its stupendous living glaciers aroused his unbounded interest, for they enabled him to verify his theories of glacial action. Again and again he returned to this continental laboratory of landscapes. The greatest of the tide-water glaciers appropriately commemorates his name. Upon this book of Alaska travels, all but finished before his unforeseen departure, John Muir expended the last months of his life.

Steep Trails by John Muir Steep Trails

A collection of Muir's previously unpublished essays, released shortly after his death. "This volume will meet, in every way, the high expectations of Muir's readers. The recital of his experiences during a stormy night on the summit of Mount Shasta will take rank among the most thrilling of his records of adventure. His observations on the dead towns of Nevada, and on the Indians gathering their harvest of pine nuts, recall a phase of Western life that has left few traces in American literature...

By: Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882)

The Courtship of Miles Standish by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow The Courtship of Miles Standish

During the late nineteenth century and until the middle of the twentieth, many elementary classrooms in America featured (along with a Gilbert Stuart portrait of Washington) a black-and-white print of a group of New England pilgrims on their way to church, the men carrying their muskets. Every school child at that time was intimately acquainted with the story of the Mayflower and the Plymouth colony in Massachusetts. Among the historical figures, one of the best known was Captain Miles Standish, the military commander of the little “army,” which consisted of a bare handful of men, who repeatedly defeated many times their number of hostile Indians...

By: Robert W. Service (1874-1958)

Selections from Ballads of a Cheechako by Robert W. Service Selections from Ballads of a Cheechako

These twelve poems are from Ballads of a Cheechako which was Robert W. Service’s third book of Yukon poems, published in 1909. The word Cheechako, from Chinook Jargon, originated in the United States (Alaska) and Canada (Yukon) and was imported into local English during the Yukon gold rush that began in 1896. Cheechako, is a non derogatory word meaning “newcomer” or “tenderfoot.” The derivation looks something like this: chee new cha come ko home.

Book cover Ottawa Folk Festival Robert Service Collection

The Spell of the Yukon by Robert Service with patrons, musicians and organizers. Robert Service is an iconic Canadian poet.

By: Susanna Moodie (1803-1885)

Book cover Roughing It in the Bush

'Roughing It In the Bush' is Susanna Moodie's account of how she coped with the harshness of life in the woods of Upper Canada, as an Englishwoman homesteading abroad. Her narrative was constructed partly as a response to the glowing falsehoods European land-agents were circulating about life in the New World. Her chronicle is frank and humorous, and was a popular sensation at the time of its publication in 1852.

By: Arthur Scott Bailey

The Tale of Brownie Beaver by Arthur Scott Bailey The Tale of Brownie Beaver

Arthur Scott Bailey was the author of more than forty children’s books, centered all his plots in the animal, bird and insect worlds, weaving natural history into the stories in a way that won educator’s approval without arousing the suspicions of his young readers. The Tale of Brownie Beaver is another adventure of the friends and neighbours of Pleasant Valley. You will hear how Brownie keeps a house safe from a Freshet and how he receives his weekly newspaper and not to forget the making of a new suit.

By: Charles Morris (1833-1922)

The San Francisco Calamity by Earthquake and Fire by Charles Morris The San Francisco Calamity by Earthquake and Fire

The first half of this book describes the devastating earthquake that hit San Francisco in 1906, and the subsequent destruction caused by fire. Various eyewitnesses and victims give their account on the tragedy. In the second half, a number of different other earthquakes and volcanic eruptions are retold, like the eruption of the Vesuvius that destroyed Pompeij or the explosion of the Krakatoa, together with scientific explanations for the causes of earthquakes and the eruption of volcanos.

By: Algernon Blackwood (1869-1951)

The Man Whom the Trees Loved by Algernon Blackwood The Man Whom the Trees Loved

The story of a man’s deep connection with nature and his wife’s fear of it.

By: Theodore Roosevelt

Through the Brazilian Wilderness by Theodore Roosevelt Through the Brazilian Wilderness

Roosevelt’s popular book Through the Brazilian Wilderness describes his expedition into the Brazilian jungle in 1913 as a member of the Roosevelt-Rondon Scientific Expedition co-named after its leader, Brazilian explorer Cândido Rondon. The book describes all of the scientific discovery, scenic tropical vistas and exotic flora, fauna and wild life experienced on the expedition. One goal of the expedition was to find the headwaters of the Rio da Duvida, the River of Doubt, and trace it north to the Madeira and thence to the Amazon River...

By: Waldemar Bonsels (1880-1952)

The Adventures of Maya the Bee by Waldemar Bonsels The Adventures of Maya the Bee

A little bee is born in a large and busy hive. At that time, the hive is going through a period of unrest and there are fears that it will become subdivided into separate colonies. The little new-born, Maya, is under the care of a strict but loving teacher. One day, driven by curiosity and rebellion, Maya escapes from the safe environs of the hive and flies into the forest. Here, she encounters all sorts of interesting, exciting, frightening and funny things. The Adventures of Maya the Bee is the story of the intriguing days that follow...

By: J. Arthur Thomson (1861-1933)

The Outline of Science by J. Arthur Thomson The Outline of Science

The Outline of Science, Volume 1 was written specifically with the man-on-the-street in mind as the target audience. Covering scientific subjects ranging from astronomy to biology to elementary physics in clear, concise and easily understood prose, this popular science work is largely as relevant today as when first published in 1922. Special emphasis is given to the principles of biological adaptation and evolution, especially how they relate to the rise of the human species from lower orders. Also included are the basics of the (then) fairly new concept of relativity and its impact on emerging scientific theories...

By: John Ruskin (1819-1900)

Lectures on Landscape by John Ruskin Lectures on Landscape

A series of lectures on landscape painting delivered at Oxford in 1871, by artist, critic, and social commentator, John Ruskin.

By: Elizabeth von Arnim (1866-1941)

Elizabeth and her German Garden by Elizabeth von Arnim Elizabeth and her German Garden

Elizabeth and Her German Garden is a novel by Elizabeth von Arnim, first published in 1898; it was very popular and frequently reprinted during the early years of the 20th century. The story is a year's diary written by the protagonist Elizabeth about her experiences learning gardening and interacting with her friends. It includes commentary on the beauty of nature and on society, but is primarily humorous due to Elizabeth's frequent mistakes and her idiosyncratic outlook on life. She looked down upon the frivolous fashions of her time writing "I believe all needlework and dressmaking is of the devil, designed to keep women from study...

By: John Wesley Powell (1834-1902)

Canyons of the Colorado, or The exploration of the Colorado River and its Canyons by John Wesley Powell Canyons of the Colorado, or The exploration of the Colorado River and its Canyons

John Wesley Powell was a pioneer American explorer, ethnologist, and geologist in the 19th Century. In 1869 he set out to explore the Colorado and the Grand Canyon. He gathered nine men, four boats and food for ten months and set out from Green River, Wyoming, on May 24. Passing through dangerous rapids, the group passed down the Green River to its confluence with the Colorado River (then also known as the Grand River upriver from the junction), near present-day Moab, Utah. The expedition’s route...

By: William Dean Howells (1837-1920)

Indian Summer by William Dean Howells Indian Summer

In his novel Indian Summer, William Dean Howells presents a mellow but realistic story that has the complete feel of that delightful time of the year, although the plot actually spans several seasons. The Indian summer aspect applies to a sophisticated gentleman, Theodore Colville, who has just entered his middle years as he returns to a scene, Florence, Italy, that played an important part in his early manhood. It was here twenty years earlier that he first fell in love, seemingly successfully until a sudden and harsh rejection...

By: L. Frank Baum (1856-1919)

Book cover Policeman Bluejay

This is another "TWINKLE TALE" from Mr. Baum (written under the pen name Laura Bancroft) and celebrates the further adventures of Twinkle and Chubbins as they magically become child-larks and live the exciting, and often dangerous, life of birds in the forest.

By: Richard Jefferies (1848-1887)

The Gamekeeper at Home by Richard Jefferies The Gamekeeper at Home

Richard Jefferies (1848 – 1887) was born and spent his childhood on a farm at Coate,Wiltshire. He joined the ‘Wiltshire and Gloucestershire Standard’ in 1868 and also started to write articles and pamphlets on various agricultural issues and local history topics. He is best known for his depiction of English rural life in essays, books of natural history, and novels. This classic of English nature writing gives an idea of the life of a gamekeeper in southern England in the second half of the nineteenth century.

By: Charles Hoy Fort

The Book of the Damned by Charles Hoy Fort The Book of the Damned

The Book of the Damned was the first published nonfiction work of the author Charles Fort (first edition 1919). Dealing with various types of anomalous phenomena including UFOs, strange falls of both organic and inorganic materials from the sky, odd weather patterns, the possible existence of creatures generally held to be mythological, disappearances of people under strange circumstances, and many other phenomena, the book is historically considered to be the first written in the specific field of anomalistics. –

By: Arabella B. Buckley (1840-1929)

Birds of the Air by Arabella B. Buckley Birds of the Air

Arabella Buckley had a great love of nature and wished to impart that love to children. Birds of the Air will encourage children to observe birds in their natural environment and notice the habits of each particular bird they encounter.

By Pond and River by Arabella B. Buckley By Pond and River

In By Pond and River, another of Arabella Buckley’s wonderful science books for children, she explains the habitats of ponds and rivers, exposing children to the animals and plant life that are found there.

By: John Burroughs (1837-1921)

Squirrels and other Fur-Bearers by John Burroughs Squirrels and other Fur-Bearers

Squirrels and other Fur-Bearers, a collection of essays by American naturalist and essayist, John Burroughs, provides fascinating insight into the daily life of small woodland creatures. Included in these essays are Burrough’s personal observations of squirrels, rabbits, mink, and chipmunks, as well as numerous other small mammals. Highly recommended for anyone, both young and old, with an interest in nature and wildlife!

Nature Near Home and Other Papers by John Burroughs Nature Near Home and Other Papers

Nature Near Home is one of many books on natural history by John Burroughs. It is full of simple observations about rural scenes and charming stories about animals, plants, and even people! Burroughs loves the creatures around him and derives great pleasure from his walks and studies in nature’s scenes.

By: Thomas Henry Huxley (1825-1895)

Has a Frog a Soul? by Thomas Henry Huxley Has a Frog a Soul?

Thomas Huxley, known as “Darwin’s Bulldog” for his championing and development of Darwinism, was perhaps the most important Victorian biologist after Darwin himself. This speech to the Metaphysical Society in 1870 is one of Huxley’s best known texts outside the sphere of his specialism, and remains read today by students of philosophy. In it, Huxley argues from the results of vivisection to metaphysics.

By: William H. Hudson (1841-1922)

Far Away and Long Ago by William H. Hudson Far Away and Long Ago

William Henry Hudson (August 1841 – 1922) was an author, naturalist and ornithologist. Hudson was born of U.S. parents living in the Quilmes Partido in Buenos Aires Province, Argentina, where he spent his youth studying the local flora and fauna and observing both natural and human dramas on what was then a lawless frontier. ‘Far Away and Long Ago’ is a classic memoir of a boy, fascinated by nature, on the Pampas in the 19th century.

By: Rupert Brooke

Collected Poems of Rupert Brooke by Rupert Brooke Collected Poems of Rupert Brooke

Rupert Chawner Brooke (August 3, 1887 – April 23, 1915) was an English poet known for his idealistic War Sonnets written during the First World War (especially The Soldier), as well as for his poetry written outside of war, especially The Old Vicarage, Grantchester and The Great Lover. He was also known for his boyish good looks, which prompted the Irish poet William Butler Yeats to describe him as “the handsomest young man in England”.

By: H. Rider Haggard (1856-1925)

Book cover The Brethren

Set in the days of the Crusaders, this books tells of a young maiden named Rosamund, and her twin cousins. Godwin is the grey eyed thoughtful man, and Wulf is the blue eyed warrior. They are both knights of England and they are both in love with their fair cousin. But the riddle of the story is which does Rosamund love?The adventure begins when Rosamund is taken from England and carried to the East. The plot thickens as the two young knights follow her in hopes of rescuing her from the Muslim leader, Saladin...

By: Alfred North Whitehead (1861-1947)

The Concept of Nature by Alfred North Whitehead The Concept of Nature

In The Concept of Nature, Alfred North Whitehead discusses the interrelatedness of time, space, and human perception.The idea of objects as ‘occasions of experience’, arguments against body-mind duality and the search for an all-encompassing ‘philosophy of nature’ are examined, with specific reference to contemporary (Einstein, with whose theory of relativity he has some complaints) and ancient (Plato, Aristotle) approaches.

By: Brontë sisters

Selected Poems by Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell by Brontë sisters Selected Poems by Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell

Poems by Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell was a volume of poetry published jointly by the three Bronte sisters, Charlotte, Emily and Anne in 1846, and their first work to ever go in print. To evade contemporary prejudice against female writers, the Bronte sisters adopted androgynous first names. Marked by profound sentiments, gravity and melodious harmony, the poems are strewn on the fields of soulful love, rueful reminiscence and the immortal yearnings of a Christian soul, and represent a fragrant assemblage of noetic flowers from the glebes of olden England...

By: Isabella L. Bird (1831-1904)

A Lady's Life in the Rocky Mountains by Isabella L. Bird A Lady's Life in the Rocky Mountains

Isabella Bird began travelling while in her early twenties to help alleviate illness that had plagued her since childhood. She was a single woman in her early forties when she made her treck through the Rocky Mountains. A Lady’s Life in the Rocky Mountains details this fascinating account of her travels through a series of letters written to her sister, Henrietta. These letters are filled with beautiful, vivid descriptions of the scenery, the people she encountered, the way of life, and a mountain man named Jim Nugent, that was as rough as they come, but a complete gentleman with Ms...


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