2023 will see the release of new agriculture-related books spanning from memoirs of rural lives and experiences to the criminology of agriculture and food and its history.

One such book is Chicken Boy, which details author Arthur Parkinson’s life growing up in a Nottinghamshire town alongside his love for chickens. Parkinson is also the author The Pottery Gardener and The Flower Yard.

The cover of Arthur Parkinson’s ‘Chicken Boy’. Image: Penguin Books

Penguin Books’ press catalogue for spring and summer of 2023 describes Parkinson’s Chicken Boy as “a charming portrait of life in the company of hens”.

“A personal and humorous memoir of Arthur’s life amongst his hens, Chicken Boy is illustrated throughout his own characterful watercolours and candid photography of his ‘ladies’,” it added.

“This is an invitation to discover the joy that is only possible in the company of these intriguing creatures: Pekins are friendly, Lavender Leghorns aloof, while Burford Browns have a bad habit of feather-pecking.”

Chicken Boy will be available to purchase in April of this year and will span 256 pages.

The Criminology of Agriculture and Food

The Criminology of Agriculture and Food: (Routledge Studies in Rural Criminology), by Joseph F. Donnermeyer, explores the criminological dimensions of food and agriculture.

This book aims to offer “much-needed synthesis” of a wide literature of the criminology of food and agriculture, with WHSmith, a global book retailer, describing him as a “pioneer of rural criminology”.

Donnermeyer mentions and explores international topics such as:

  • Farm victimisation;
  • Land theft;
  • Bio-piracy;
  • The abuse and trafficking of farmworkers and farm animals;
  • and farmer involvement in organised and violent crime.

“This landmark book offers an important contribution in the development of the criminology of food and agriculture and sets out an international theoretical, research, and policy agenda for future scholarship,” WHSmith’s description of the book reads.

“It is essential reading for green criminologists and rural criminologists and sociologists alike, as well as those engaged with rural studies and food science.”

The book is currently available to preorder on the WHSmith website. It will be published, with pre-ordered copies arriving, on December 31, 2023.

Twelve Words for Moss

Twelve Words for Moss, written by Elizabeth-Jane Burnett, will document the author’s journey through wetlands from Somerset to Co. Tyrone in the Republic of Ireland and the different species of moss she discovered.

“Moss is known as the living carpet but if you look really closely, it contains an irrepressible light,” the Penguin Books press catalogue reads.

Author of ‘Twelve Words for Moss’, Elizabeth-Jane Burnett. Image: Penguin Books

“In Twelve Words for Moss, Elizabeth-Jane Burnett celebrates the unsung hero of the plant world with her unique blend of poetry, nature writing and memoir.”

Burnett explores the “hidden vibrancy” of wetlands in the book, all while “renaming her favourite species of moss as she recovers from her grief at her father’s death and draws inspiration from the resilience and tenacity of her plant – and human – friends”.

Burnett is a writer of English and Kenyan heritage and was born in Devon. She credits her work with being inspired by the landscape in which she was raised.

She is the author of Swims, a Sunday Times Poetry Book of the Year, and her poetry has been highly commended for the Forward Prize.

Twelve Words for Moss will be published in April 2023 and will span over 200 pages.