Night Magic

Adventures Among Glowworms, Moon Gardens, and Other Marvels of the Dark

Coming Soon


By Leigh Ann Henion

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$19.99 CAD

On this imperiled planet, nature’s magic still exists, often in the places we least expect it.

Night Magic is a glorious celebration of the dark! New York Times bestselling nature writer Leigh Ann Henion makes the case for embracing night as a profoundly beautiful part of the world we inhabit—and she invites us to leave our well-lit homes and step outside. It turns out we don’t have to go far to find marvels: We are surrounded by animals that rise with the moon, gigantic moths, and nocturnal blooms that reveal themselves, incrementally, as light fades. In her quest to know night with greater intimacy, Henion travels through forests alight with bioluminescent mushrooms and mountain valleys teeming with migratory salamanders. She ventures into the dark alongside naturalists, biologists, primitive-skills experts, and others who’ve dedicated their lives to cultivating relationships with darkness and the creatures who depend on it.

Every page of this lyrical book feels like an opportunity to ask: How did I not know about this before? For example, we learn that it can take hours, not minutes, for human eyes to reach full night vision capacity. And that there are thousands of firefly species on earth, each with flash patterns as unique as fingerprints—with one million tourists making pilgrimages to witness synchronous fireflies every year. In this age of increasing artificial light, Night Magic is an invitation to focus on the biodiversity that surrounds us. We do not need to stargaze into the distant cosmos or to dive into the depths of oceans to find awe in the dark—when we reclaim night, dazzling wonders can be found in our own backyards.


  • "A dazzling reminder of what it means to take stock of our planet's night wisdom, and a prescient reminder to let your vision ripen at night. And if you do—you'll understand why we need more evenings full of foxfire and ‘mothapaloozas.’ In this vivid book, Henion renders our night world with profound care and discovery. Prepare to be enchanted. Prepare to love the darkness.”

    Aimee Nezhukumatathil, New York Times bestselling author of World of Wonders
  • Night Magic is an illuminating exploration of the dark. Beautifully written, often moving, and full of wonder.”

    Richard Louv, international bestselling author of Last Child in the Woods and Our Wild Calling
  • "Leigh Ann Henion has illuminated the natural treasures that live by night. Moths, fireflies, owls, and much more are brought to attention in these pages with the hope that we can put aside our fear of the dark and experience what happens during a full half of our stay on earth. Night Magic is a beautiful journey."

    Douglas W. Tallamy, New York Times bestselling author of Nature’s Best Hope and Bringing Nature Home
  • “A thrilling exploration of a world that waits for us behind the lights.”

    Tristan Gooley, New York Times bestselling author of The Lost Art of Reading Nature’s Signs and How to Read a Tree
  • “Brilliant. Leigh Ann Henion is an inspiring and wise guide not only to the biological marvels of night, but also to the communities of people who celebrate and protect the rich life of the dark. Beyond fear of the dark is wonder, vividly evoked in these pages.”

    David George Haskell, author of Sounds Wild and Broken, The Songs of Trees, and The Forest Unseen
  • Praise for Phenomenal:

    “What a cool and fascinating ride. Leigh Ann Henion has tackled one of the great questions of contemporary, intelligent, adventurous women: Is it possible to be a wife and mother and still explore the world? Her answer seems to be that this is not only possible, but essential. This story shows how. I think it will open doors for many.”
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert, bestselling author of Eat, Pray, Love

    "A moving and original memoir about the search for transcendence in moments both large and small."
    -- Jenny Offill, author of Dept. of Speculation

    “Leigh Ann Henion’s exhilarating book (and life!) is everything the title suggests and more. Reading Phenomenal will give you courage—courage to explore the world we live in, and further, courage to explore your self. With moments of breath-stealing beauty, wild intelligence, and unrelenting honesty, Phenomenal is a true gift for everyone who’s ever been curious.”
    -- Ruth Ozeki, author of The Book of Form and Emptiness


On Sale
Sep 24, 2024
Page Count
336 pages
Algonquin Books

Leigh Ann Henion

About the Author

Leigh Ann Henion is the New York Times bestselling author of Phenomenal: A Hesitant Adventurer’s Search for Wonder in the Natural World. Her work has appeared in Smithsonian, The Washington Post, The New York Times, Southern Living, Garden & Gun, and a variety of other publications. Henion’s articles have been cited as notable in The Best American Essays, The Best American Travel Writing, The Best American Sports Writing, and The Best American Science & Nature Writing. She has received four Lowell Thomas Awards from the Society of American Travel Writers, and her work has been supported by the Alicia Patterson Foundation and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Henion lives in the mountains of North Carolina.

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