A lyrical celebration of birdsong, and the rekindling of a deep passion for nature. 'At this time of year, blackbirds never simply fly: instead, like reluctantly retired officers, they're always "on manoeuvres", and it's easy to see from their constant agitation that for them every flower bed is a bunker, every shed a redoubt and every hedge-bottom a potential place of ambush'. As the world went silent in lockdown, something else happened; for the first time, many of us started becoming more aware of the spring sounds of the birds around us. Birdsong in a Time of Silence is a lyrical, uplifting reflection on these sounds and what they mean to us. From a portrait of the blackbird - most prominent and articulate of the early spring singers - to explorations of how birds sing, the science behind their choice of song and nest-sites, and the varied meanings that people have brought to and taken from birdsong, this book ultimately shows that natural history and human history cannot be separated. It is the story of a collective reawakening brought on by the strangest of springs.