March 2, 2024

Nature at your doorstep –

As a qualified biologist and former travel guide on Arctic and Antarctic expeditions, Hannah Burgas is familiar with many natural habitats. On the other hand, she had long considered her hometown of Oslo to be the complete opposite of wilderness, until she began experiencing it during the pandemic.

With her head full of questions and equipped with binoculars, a magnifying glass and a notebook, she takes a year to learn about all the creatures and plants in the city to which she had previously paid little attention. On her forays, she encounters intelligent crows and adaptable sparrows. Found prehistoric relics in a city park near linden trees. With the help of experts, she discovers how the presence of lichens can be used to draw conclusions about air quality and what Oslo's soil is made of. After careful consideration, she can find something positive about the ants in her kitchen.

Although the problems of increasing urbanization are not far from the Norwegian's mind, at the end of her experience she came to the conclusion that the supposed stone desert city is full of life!

After reading this clearly written and beautifully presented book, you will feel as if you are embarking on a journey of discovery on your doorstep with your eyes and ears open. Christopher Walter

Hannah Burgas
Secret life in the city
Strokes edition, 304 pages, €26,

ISBN 978-3-948065-27-0