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Amateur Naturalist
The Other End of the Driveway
An amateur naturalist's observations in the Maine woods

The Other End of the Driveway is a collection of excursions into the natural history, flora, fauna, weather and weirdness of the central Maine woods. These essays short and long follow in the tracks of writers like Henry David Thoreau and Annie Dillard to bring the quirks and curiosities of nature into fresh and fascinating focus.
"[Dana Wilde has] journeyed widely over the nine or so acres surrounding his log home in Troy. His adventures and misadventures, chronicled through the seasons, are absorbing and entertaining to read any time of the year."
Dana Wilde lives in Troy, Maine, and writes the Backyard Naturalist column column for the Kennebec Journal and Morning Sentinel newspapers.
Letitia Baldwin,
Ellsworth American
Listen to the author read "Europa,"
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by Dana Wilde
Table of Contents
"Dana Wilde’s essays of Maine’s natural world are a joy. It’s perfect for a busy person who has 20 minutes to read. You can read an essay, put the book down and not lose your place. It will leave you wanting to squeeze in three more pages before you go to sleep."
Robin Follette, Maine Nature News
"Wilde's writing is lucid, painting vivid word pictures of such things as colorful autumn leaves, dirty spring snowbanks and wacky images of toad sex." ... "[He] doesn't just enjoy the beauty of nature, he thinks about it, he questions, he explores and he is amazed."
Bill Bushnell,
Bushnell on Books, Kennebec Journal
"[Dana Wilde] is unwilling to just accept the conventional answers provided in most naturalists' guides. He presses issues from scientific and philosophical points of view; he asks tough questions -- really tough questions. He delves into the universe, be it measuring starlight, time or even creation. While those answers could be lofty and ethereal, Wilde has done his research ... so that he can explain them with surprising ease."
Steven Pappas,
Barre-Montpelier Times Argus
Also available:

Nebulae: A Backyard Cosmography

A companion volume to The Other End of the Driveway that looks up and outward to the stars and planets.

Poet Tom Sexton on Nebulae:
"Dana Wilde has a scientist's curiosity and a poet's imagination. I can imagine him walking a field in Maine with his mentor Thoreau at his side on a winter night while they discuss the cosmos or the humming sound you can hear in Shanghai even in the middle of the night."
"He defines amateur as 'one who lacks the skill of a professional, but the root is Latin "amare," to love -- an amateur is one who loves, in this case, nature.' And his love shows through this fascinating book. Whether he's ruminating on the inner life of toads, or taking us on a tour of China, he tells how he has learned 'to navigate by intuition and moral sensibility.'"
Sanford Phippen,
Puckerbrush Review, Spring/Summer 2012
"'... the feeling that the woods are a layer over a silence that seems to be speaking.' This is from a chapter called the Woods and the Singularity in Dana Wilde's The Other End of the Driveway. This is one of the most interesting and moving books I've read in a long time, a series of essays that masterfully blend science and spirituality. Check it out."
Dave Morrison,
Author of Clubland, Fail, Six and other books