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Publisher's Summary

From the fertile soils of love, land, identity, family, and race emerges The Home Place, a big-hearted, unforgettable memoir by ornithologist J. Drew Lanham.  

Dating back to slavery, Edgefield County, South Carolina - a place "easy to pass by on the way somewhere else" - has been home to generations of Lanhams. In The Home Place, listeners meet these extraordinary people, including Drew himself, who over the course of the 1970s falls in love with the natural world around him. As his passion takes flight, however, he begins to ask what it means to be "the rare bird, the oddity".  

By turns angry, funny, elegiac, and heartbreaking, The Home Place is a remarkable meditation on nature and belonging, at once a deeply moving memoir and riveting exploration of the contradictions of Black identity in the rural South - and in America today.

©2016 J. Drew Lanham (P)2019 Tantor

What listeners say about The Home Place

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  • Bill
  • 19-12-2019

Beautifully written and narrated

Dr. Lanham’s memoir about growing up in the South Carolina piedmont is a delight. His life story is an interesting one, and his passion for the natural world really shines through. Plus, he does a great job narrating his own story.

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  • L.Curtis
  • 21-05-2021

Simply Lovely

A well written and engaging book ~ great all around. I would highly recommend it. Best!

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  • Martha McIntosh
  • 27-04-2021

My heart grew

My heart grew because of this book. Professor Lanham's writing is now beautifully etched in my heart and constant in my thoughts. This was one of those few in a lifetime books that I constantly seek, nurture and hold sacred. This book changed me and I promise that your reading will bestow unknown and unconditional gifts. We, the readers, are so grateful for the entire Lanham family and how what came before, what is and what will become is always found in the nature and land around us.

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  • Great Aunt
  • 25-04-2021

Work worth reading

Should be required reading for high school students and teachers. Also book clubs. Thought provocin

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  • J. Carney
  • 15-03-2021

Connections

I love hearing the author tell his story. It is written on so many levels with an underlining of caring and seems so authentic.

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  • Jersey Girl
  • 14-03-2021

Budding Ornithologist in the making!

I so loved this book! I read it in my quest to teach my young students about an African American Ornithologist for Black History Month. My Kindergartens affectionately call him the ‘brown birder’ and are so excited when Its time to learn something else about Dr. Lanham. My son, who is a recent environmental studies graduate, turned me onto Dr. Lanham and I have not looked back. Great laugh out loud moments from his upbringing that are so familiar and so much more that made me want to learn more about nature. What a rich, familiar, heartfelt story! Loved every second of it! Thank you for sharing it with us!

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  • M E MARTINSEN
  • 10-03-2021

Not what I expected, But so much more.

I expected a narrative on birds and nature, but found the family and personal history of a black man from the South. His story was familiar and foreign to me at the same time. I learned a lot, and thought a lot. Thank you.

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  • Paula Plonski
  • 04-03-2021

Wonderful book!

I was already familiar with Dr. Lanham as a birder and scientist, and was delighted to discover his talents as a writer. This is a beautifully written book with the added benefit of narration by the author.

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  • Margo Olson
  • 28-02-2021

Beautiful Description and Storytelling

J Drew Lanham is a beautiful storyteller. The words are rich, intimate and bring the reader (listener) fully into his experience and world. I really loved his book and his narration.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 26-02-2021

Beautiful in every way

What a wonderful book- I normally don't have the time nor have found a book that I wanted to write a review for, this is how much I enjoyed it-the story is a wonderful mix of history, love of the land and South Carolina, love of nature, love of family- just joyful. I'm a birder and the descriptions and observations of the birds was very accurate and painted a beautiful image in my mind as I listened. What he has shared will stay with me always. The narration by the author was the cherry on top. Thank you for sharing your life!!

In the spirit of reconciliation, Audible Australia acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.