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Coming Fall 2019: How to Catch a Mole

– A striking and original debut memoir

Vancouver, BC – Greystone Books has acquired North American English Language rights to How to Catch a Mole: Wisdom from a Life Lived in Nature by Wales-based writer and poet Marc Hamer. The book has been lauded by the Guardian and the Bookseller as the next H is for Hawk.

Kneeling in a muddy field, clutching something soft and blue-black, Marc Hamer promises he will stop trapping moles—forever. In this tender, masterful work of nonfiction literature, the molecatcher shares what led him to this strange career: from sleeping amongst trees as a homeless teenager, to toiling on the railway, to weeding windswept gardens in Wales. Hamer infuses his wanderings with radiant poetry and stark, simple observations on nature’s oft-ignored details. He also reveals how to catch a mole—a craft long kept secret by its masters—and burrows into the unusual lives of his muses. Moles, we learn, eat half their weight in earthworms, day and night. Their blood holds unusual amounts of carbon dioxide. Their vast tunnel networks are intricate and cunningly built. And, like Hamer, they work alone.

Earnest, understated, and sublime, How to Catch a Mole is the mark of a fierce new literary talent. A deft combination of memoir and nature writing, Hamer’s unconventional life story runs parallel to his farewell ode to the mole—that colorblind and clawed beast, whose form rarely sees the light of day, until now.

Greystone Books is proud to release How To Catch a Mole on October 1, 2019.

Marc Hamer has lived in Wales for thirty years. After spending a period homeless, then working on the railway, he pursued an education in fine art. Hamer worked various artistic careers, and taught writing at Cardiff Prison, before becoming a gardener and molecatcher. His poetry and prose have been published widely.

Greystone Books is a trade book publisher that focuses on high-quality nonfiction. Greystone is based in Vancouver, Canada, with offices in the UK and United States.

For further information, contact Megan Jones at


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