Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT THE ECOLOGY OF LONESOMENESS by @David_J_OBrien

Today’s team review is from Georgia, she blogs at

Rosie's Book Review team 1

Georgia has been reading The Ecology Of Lonesomeness by David J O’Brien


#Bookreview for The Ecology of Lonesomeness by David O’Brien @David_J_Obrien #RBRT


There are many reasons why you choose a book. I chose The Ecology of Lonesomeness because Mr O’Brien has a degree in environmental biology and a doctorate in zoology. I didn’t go to university because I didn’t know what to study but in the last few years I decided that this is what I would have read, had I gone.

This book tells the story of Kaleb, an American ecologist, who arrives in the Great Glen to study the ecology of Loch Ness on a two-year grant. He meets Jessie, a local girl, recently returned from university and they fall in love.

This book is the rather wonderful telling of two people and their meeting. The hesitant flirtation and initial conversations we all recognise from that rather heady period of time when you try to find out more about the one you are attracted to…lovely…and then their developing romance. And that is what this book is, nothing much happens in it, no tears, tantrums, no raging upsets but instead there are beautifully written characters who you can picture as clearly as the incredible setting in which they live.

Now I am a lover of the countryside, of space, peace and loneliness and O’Brien writes so brilliantly about the rivers, lochs and glens you can almost smell the heather. There is ecology in here, the science behind it and how it is studied which is fascinating and adds a terrifically different dimension to this read.

The characterisation was terrific. Kaleb, who is attractive, not so much by how he looks as we only get rare glimpses of that but by how he thinks. Jessie, whose voice was so clearly written I could hear the lilt of my Grandmothers dulcet tones when she spoke and she was just so likeable and down to earth I’d love her as a friend. Malcolm, Jessie’s father, brilliant, and just how I would expect a Scottish father of a girl being dated by an outsider would behave – haha! And I must mention, Ahab, who says a line towards the end that brought a little sparkle to my eye.

Hidden in all of this excellently paced writing there is ‘the secret’, for what would Loch Ness be without a little mystery and while it is pivotal to this plot line it sits in the story as smoothly and lightly as the whispered rumours that surround this part of the world.

As I said before nothing much happens in this story, but I couldn’t wait to get back to it each night and read some more, it is that captivating – an excellent job Mr O’Brien.

Find a copy here from or



Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT THE ECOLOGY OF LONESOMENESS by @David_J_OBrien #SundayBlogShare

Today’s second team review is from Suraya, find her here

Rosie's Book Review team 1

Suraya has been reading The Ecology Of Lonesomeness by David J O’Brien


The Ecology of Lonesomeness

By David J O’Brien

A quick trawl through Amazon reveals any number of novels on the Loch Ness Monster. But I bet there are few like David O’Brien’s which mixed scientific expertise with a romance.

The descriptions of the Scottish countryside are almost so good I could draw a picture without having to refer to an actual picture. I could feel the chill air, see the wind playing over the lake and smell the fish and chips at the Canalside Fish and Chip shop.

We meet the term Lonesomeness early in the novel. This is a clever play on words and you will find out why as you read the novel.

This is where Jessie and Kaleb meet and while he does his post-doctoral research on the Ecology of Loch Ness he mends his broken heart and discovers something that the locals want to protect from tourism.

Kaleb and Jessie’s romance seems almost inevitable. She’s a local on holiday from University in London and Kaleb is American doing some post-doctoral research. As they fall in love they grapple with the issue of whether or not Jessie will move to the United States and all that entails. This is no surprise….nor is the solution.

But while they grapple with these issues Kaleb finds skewed readings in his data.

You will have to read the novel to find out what the source of these skewed readings is. As you do enjoy the scenery and the romance. Look inside Jessie’s parent’s pub, The Shredded Sail and tramp with Jessie, Kaleb and Jessie’s father through the rugged valleys and the Highlands.

This is an enjoyable and at times scholarly read. I liked that because although David O’Brien is clearly an accomplished ecologist, he respected that most readers did not want to read a text book.

It was enjoyable and allowed us a look into the scientist’s world without showing off.

Five stars

Find a copy here from or