The kingfisher is one of the most bewitching of birds and strikingly beautiful in colour, unmistakably elegant in profile, incomparable when plunge-diving for its food. It is shy, solitary and hard to spot when it perches motionless on a branch above the water.
It is also notoriously difficult to photograph, which makes Charlie Hamilton James's achievement in producing Kingfisher: Tales from the Halcyon River all the more remarkable.
Having watched and photographed kingfishers for literally thousands of hours, he has built up a unique portfolio in which his skills as a film-maker are apparent and his shots of kingfishers diving make us believe we are watching them in motion.
The accompanying text is equally exceptional. Written in diary form, it covers the kingfishers' habits season by season and describes them with real intimacy.
The combination is an unparalleled record of the life of this beautiful bird, a towering achievement from a brilliant photographic talent.