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This collection of essays explores Thoreau’s Walden, and discusses the importance of Thoreau and Emerson on American thought.
This winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 1975, and listed by the New York Times as one of the best 100 non-fiction books of the century, gives timeless reflections on solitude, writing and faith amid the beautiful though sometimes brutal world of nature on the author’s doorstep in Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains.
An account of the author’s existence, observations and reflections, as a seasonal park ranger in southeast Utah
Destined to be a classic of nature writing, the story of how one woman trained a goshawk. As a child Helen Macdonald was determined to become a falconer. She learned the arcane terminology and read all the classic books, including T. H. White’s tortured masterpiece, The Goshawk, which describes White’s struggle to train a hawk as a spiritual contest. When her father dies and she is knocked sideways by grief, she becomes obsessed with the idea of training her own goshawk. She buys Mabel for £800 on a Scottish quayside and takes her home to Cambridge. Then she fills the freezer with hawk food and unplugs the phone, ready to embark on the long, strange business of trying to train this wildest of animals. H is for Hawk is a record of a spiritual journey—an unflinchingly honest account of Macdonald’s struggle with grief during the difficult process of the hawk’s taming and her own untaming. At the same time, it’s a kaleidoscopic biography of the brilliant and troubled novelist T. H. White, best known for The Once and Future King. It’s a book about memory, nature and nation, and how it might be possible to try to reconcile death with life and love. As John Vaillant’s The Tiger depicted the dangerous collision of people and nature, H is for Hawk evokes our deepest longings for something wild. With stunning language that that resonates long after the book’s conclusion, H is for Hawk is destined to be a classic of nature writing.
An unforgettable spiritual journey through the Himalayas by renowned writer Peter Matthiessen (1927-2014), the National Book Award-winning author of the new novel In Paradise In 1973, Peter Matthiessen and field biologist George Schaller traveled high into the remote mountains of Nepal to study the Himalayan blue sheep and possibly glimpse the rare and beautiful snow leopard. Matthiessen, a student of Zen Buddhism, was also on a spiritual quest to find the Lama of Shey at the ancient shrine on Crystal Mountain. As the climb proceeds, Matthiessen charts his inner path as well as his outer one, with a deepening Buddhist understanding of reality, suffering, impermanence, and beauty. This Penguin Classics edition features an introduction by acclaimed travel writer and novelist Pico Iyer. For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
‘A hymn of love to the world … A journey that is every bit as mythic as it is scientific, as sacred as it is historical, as clever as it is wise’ Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer has been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these two ways of knowledge together. Drawing on her life as an indigenous scientist, a mother, and a woman, Kimmerer shows how other living beings – asters and goldenrod, strawberries and squash, salamanders, algae, and sweetgrass – offer us gifts and lessons, even if we’ve forgotten how to hear their voices. In a rich braid of reflections that range from the creation of Turtle Island to the forces that threaten its flourishing today, she circles toward a central argument: that the awakening of a wider ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. For only when we can hear the languages of other beings will we be capable of understanding the generosity of the earth, and learn to give our own gifts in return.
Sunday Times Bestseller ‘A paradigm-smashing chronicle of joyous entanglement’ Charles Foster Waterstones Non-Fiction Book of the Month (September) Are trees social beings? How do trees live? Do they feel pain or have awareness of their surroundings?
God only knows what possessed Bill Bryson, a reluctant adventurer if ever there was one, to undertake a gruelling hike along the world’s longest continuous footpath—The Appalachian Trail. The 2,000-plus-mile trail winds through 14 states, stretching along the east coast of the United States, from Georgia to Maine. It snakes through some of the wildest and most spectacular landscapes in North America, as well as through some of its most poverty-stricken and primitive backwoods areas. With his offbeat sensibility, his eye for the absurd, and his laugh-out-loud sense of humour, Bryson recounts his confrontations with nature at its most uncompromising over his five-month journey. An instant classic, riotously funny, A Walk in the Woods will add a whole new audience to the legions of Bill Bryson fans.
A SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER WINNER OF THE WAINWRIGHT PRIZE 2019 WINNER OF THE STANFORD DOLMAN TRAVEL BOOK OF THE YEAR AWARD 2020 ‘You’d be crazy not to read this book’ The Sunday Times A Guardian Best Book of the 21st Century From the internationally bestselling, prize-winning author of Landmarks, The Lost Words and The Old Ways In Underland, Robert Macfarlane takes us on a journey into the worlds beneath our feet. From the ice-blue depths of Greenland’s glaciers, to the underground networks by which trees communicate, from Bronze Age burial chambers to the rock art of remote Arctic sea-caves, this is a deep-time voyage into the planet’s past and future. Global in its geography, gripping in its voice and haunting in its implications, Underland is a work of huge range and power, and a remarkable new chapter in Macfarlane’s long-term exploration of landscape and the human heart. SHORTLISTED FOR THE RSL ONDAATJE PRIZE 2020 ‘Macfarlane has invented a new kind of book, really a new genre entirely’ The Irish Times ‘He is the great nature writer, and nature poet, of this generation’ Wall Street Journal ‘Macfarlane has shown how utterly beautiful a brilliantly written travel book can still be’ Observer on The Old Ways ‘Irradiated by a profound sense of wonder… Few books give such a sense of enchantment; it is a book to give to many, and to return to repeatedly’ Independent on Landmarks ‘It sets the imagination tingling…like reading a prose Odyssey sprinkled with imagist poems’ The Sunday Times on The Old Ways
Discusses the reckless annihilation of fish and birds by the use of pesticides and warns of the possible genetic effects on humans.
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER From the bestselling author of H is for Hawk, a brilliant and insightful work about our relationship to the natural world Our world is a fascinating place, teeming not only with natural wonders that defy description, but complex interactions that create layers of meaning. Helen Macdonald is gifted with a special lens that seems to peer right through it all, and she shares her insights–at times startling, nostalgic, weighty, or simply entertaining–in this masterful collection of essays. From reflections on science fiction to the true story of an Iranian refugee’s flight to the UK, Macdonald has a truly omnivorous taste when it comes to observations of both the banal and sublime. Peppered throughout are reminisces of her own life, from her strange childhood in an estate owned by the Theosophical Society to watching total eclipses of the sun, visits to Uzbek solar power plants, eccentric English country shows, and desert hunting camps in the Gulf States. These essays move from personal experiences into wider meditations about love and loss and how we build the world around us. Whether more journalistic in tone, or literary–even formally experimental–each piece is generous, lyrical, and speaks to one another. Macdonald creates a strong thematic undertow that quietly takes the reader along piece to piece and sets them down, finally, at a place they’ve never been before.
The Book That Launched an International Movement “An absolute must-read for parents.” —The Boston Globe “It rivals Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring.” —The Cincinnati Enquirer “I like to play indoors better ’cause that’s where all the electrical outlets are,” reports a fourth grader. But it’s not only computers, television, and video games that are keeping kids inside. It’s also their parents’ fears of traffic, strangers, Lyme disease, and West Nile virus; their schools’ emphasis on more and more homework; their structured schedules; and their lack of access to natural areas. Local governments, neighborhood associations, and even organizations devoted to the outdoors are placing legal and regulatory constraints on many wild spaces, sometimes making natural play a crime. As children’s connections to nature diminish and the social, psychological, and spiritual implications become apparent, new research shows that nature can offer powerful therapy for such maladies as depression, obesity, and attention deficit disorder. Environment-based education dramatically improves standardized test scores and grade-point averages and develops skills in problem solving, critical thinking, and decision making. Anecdotal evidence strongly suggests that childhood experiences in nature stimulate creativity. In Last Child in the Woods, Louv talks with parents, children, teachers, scientists, religious leaders, child-development researchers, and environmentalists who recognize the threat and offer solutions. Louv shows us an alternative future, one in which parents help their kids experience the natural world more deeply—and find the joy of family connectedness in the process. Now includes A Field Guide with 100 Practical Actions We Can Take Discussion Points for Book Groups, Classrooms, and Communities Additional Notes by the Author New and Updated Research from the U.S. and Abroad Richard Louv’s new book, Our Wild Calling, is available now.
Focusing on the human relationship with plants, the author of Second Nature uses botany to explore four basic human desires–sweetness, beauty, intoxication, and control–through portraits of four plants that embody them: the apple, tulip, marijuana, and potato. 100,000 first printing.
Most books about the environment build on dire threats warning of the possible extinction of humanity. Alan Weisman avoids frightening off readers by disarmingly wiping out our species in the first few pages of this remarkable book. He then continues with an astounding depiction of how Earth will fare once we’re no longer around. The World Without Us is a one-of-a-kind book that sweeps through time from the moment of humanity’s future extinction to millions of years into the future. Drawing on interviews with experts and on real examples of places in the world that have already been abandoned by humans—Chernobyl, the Korean DMZ and an ancient Polish forest—Weisman shows both the shocking impact we’ve had on our planet and how impermanent our footprint actually is.
Few books have had a greater impact than A Sand County Almanac, which many credit with launching a revolution in land management. Written as a series of sketches based principally upon the flora and fauna in a rural part of Wisconsin, the book, originally published by Oxford in 1949, gathers informal pieces written by Leopold over a forty-year period as he traveled through the woodlands of Wisconsin, Iowa, Arizona, Sonora, Oregon, Manitoba, and elsewhere; a final section addresses the philosophical issues involved in wildlife conservation. Beloved for its description and evocation of the natural world, Leopold’s book, which has sold well over 2 million copies, remains a foundational text in environmental science and a national treasure.
This is Charles Darwin’s chronicle of his five-year journey, beginning in 1831, around the world as a naturalist on the H.M.S. Beagle.
ONE OF THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW’S 10 BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR A major book about the future of the world, blending intellectual and natural history and field reporting into a powerful account of the mass extinction unfolding before our eyes Over the last half a billion years, there have been five mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on earth suddenly and dramatically contracted. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. This time around, the cataclysm is us. In The Sixth Extinction, two-time winner of the National Magazine Award and New Yorker writer Elizabeth Kolbert draws on the work of scores of researchers in half a dozen disciplines, accompanying many of them into the field: geologists who study deep ocean cores, botanists who follow the tree line as it climbs up the Andes, marine biologists who dive off the Great Barrier Reef. She introduces us to a dozen species, some already gone, others facing extinction, including the Panamian golden frog, staghorn coral, the great auk, and the Sumatran rhino. Through these stories, Kolbert provides a moving account of the disappearances occurring all around us and traces the evolution of extinction as concept, from its first articulation by Georges Cuvier in revolutionary Paris up through the present day. The sixth extinction is likely to be mankind’s most lasting legacy; as Kolbert observes, it compels us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human.
“An anthology of nature writing by people of color, providing deeply personal connections to—or disconnects from—nature.” —NPR From African American to Asian American, indigenous to immigrant, “multiracial” to “mixed-blood,” the diversity of cultures in this world is matched only by the diversity of stories explaining our cultural origins: stories of creation and destruction, displacement and heartbreak, hope and mystery. With writing from Jamaica Kincaid on the fallacies of national myths, Yusef Komunyakaa connecting the toxic legacy of his hometown, Bogalusa, LA, to a blind faith in capitalism, and bell hooks relating the quashing of multiculturalism to the destruction of nature that is considered “unpredictable”—among more than thirty-five other examinations of the relationship between culture and nature—this collection points toward the trouble of ignoring our cultural heritage, but also reveals how opening our eyes and our minds might provide a more livable future. Contributors: Elmaz Abinader, Faith Adiele, Francisco X. Alarcón, Fred Arroyo, Kimberly Blaeser, Joseph Bruchac, Robert D. Bullard, Debra Kang Dean, Camille Dungy, Nikky Finney, Ray Gonzalez, Kimiko Hahn, bell hooks, Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston, Pualani Kanaka’ole Kanahele, Robin Wall Kimmerer, Jamaica Kincaid, Yusef Komunyakaa, J. Drew Lanham, David Mas Masumoto, Maria Melendez, Thyllias Moss, Gary Paul Nabhan, Nalini Nadkarni, Melissa Nelson, Jennifer Oladipo, Louis Owens, Enrique Salmon, Aileen Suzara, A. J. Verdelle, Gerald Vizenor, Patricia Jabbeh Wesley, Al Young, Ofelia Zepeda “This notable anthology assembles thinkers and writers with firsthand experience or insight on how economic and racial inequalities affect a person’s understanding of nature . . . an illuminating read.” —Bloomsbury Review “[An] unprecedented and invaluable collection.” —Booklist
“Merlin Sheldrake’s marvelous tour of these diverse and extraordinary life forms is eye-opening on why humans should consider fungi among the greatest of earth’s marvels. . . . Wondrous.”–Time A mind-bending journey into the hidden universe of fungi, “one of those rare books that can truly change the way you see the world around you” (Helen Macdonald, author of H Is for Hawk). NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY Time * New Statesman * London Evening Standard * Science Friday When we think of fungi, we likely think of mushrooms. But mushrooms are only fruiting bodies, analogous to apples on a tree. Most fungi live out of sight, yet make up a massively diverse kingdom of organisms that supports and sustains nearly all living systems. Fungi provide a key to understanding the planet on which we live, and the ways we think, feel, and behave. In Entangled Life, the brilliant young biologist Merlin Sheldrake shows us the world from a fungal point of view, providing an exhilarating change of perspective. Sheldrake’s vivid exploration takes us from yeast to psychedelics, to the fungi that range for miles underground and are the largest organisms on the planet, to those that link plants together in complex networks known as the “Wood Wide Web,” to those that infiltrate and manipulate insect bodies with devastating precision. Fungi throw our concepts of individuality and even intelligence into question. They are metabolic masters, earth makers, and key players in most of life’s processes. They can change our minds, heal our bodies, and even help us remediate environmental disaster. By examining fungi on their own terms, Sheldrake reveals how these extraordinary organisms–and our relationships with them–are changing our understanding of how life works. Praise for Entangled Life “Entangled Life is a gorgeous book of literary nature writing in the tradition of [Robert] Macfarlane and John Fowles, ripe with insight and erudition. . . . Food for the soul.”–Eugenia Bone, Wall Street Journal “[An] ebullient and ambitious exploration . . . This book may not be a psychedelic–and unlike Sheldrake, I haven’t dared to consume my copy (yet)–but reading it left me not just moved but altered, eager to disseminate its message of what fungi can do.”–Jennifer Szalai, The New York Times
The seventy-fifth anniversary edition of the classic book about Cape Cod, “written with simplicity, sympathy, and beauty” (New York Herald Tribune) A chronicle of a solitary year spent on a Cape Cod beach, The Outermost House has long been recognized as a classic of American nature writing. Henry Beston had originally planned to spend just two weeks in his seaside home, but was so possessed by the mysterious beauty of his surroundings that he found he “could not go.” Instead, he sat down to try and capture in words the wonders of the magical landscape he found himself in thrall to: the migrations of seabirds, the rhythms of the tide, the windblown dunes, and the scatter of stars in the changing summer sky. Beston argued that, “The world today is sick to its thin blood for the lack of elemental things, for fire before the hands, for water, for air, for the dear earth itself underfoot.” Seventy-five years after they were first published, Beston’s words are more true than ever.
A biologist reveals the secret world hidden in a single square meter of old-growth forest—a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the Pen/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award Combining elegant writing with scientific expertise, The Forest Unseen “injects much-needed vibrancy into the stuffy world of nature writing” (Outside, “The Outdoor Books That Shaped the Last Decade”) In this wholly original book, biologist David Haskell uses a one- square-meter patch of old-growth Tennessee forest as a window onto the entire natural world. Visiting it almost daily for one year to trace nature’s path through the seasons, he brings the forest and its inhabitants to vivid life. Each of this book’s short chapters begins with a simple observation: a salamander scuttling across the leaf litter; the first blossom of spring wildflowers. From these, Haskell spins a brilliant web of biology and ecology, explaining the science that binds together the tiniest microbes and the largest mammals and describing the ecosystems that have cycled for thousands- sometimes millions-of years. Each visit to the forest presents a nature story in miniature as Haskell elegantly teases out the intricate relationships that order the creatures and plants that call it home. Written with remarkable grace and empathy, The Forest Unseen is a grand tour of nature in all its profundity. Haskell is a perfect guide into the world that exists beneath our feet and beyond our backyards.
“Should appeal to all rugged individualists who dream of escape to the forest.”—The New York Times Book Review Sam Gribley is terribly unhappy living in New York City with his family, so he runs away to the Catskill Mountains to live in the woods—all by himself. With only a penknife, a ball of cord, forty dollars, and some flint and steel, he intends to survive on his own. Sam learns about courage, danger, and independence during his year in the wilderness, a year that changes his life forever. “An extraordinary book . . . It will be read year after year.” —The Horn Book
‘A poignant, practical and moving story of how to fix our broken land, this should be conservation’s salvation; this should be its future; this is a new hope’ – Chris Packham In Wilding, Isabella Tree tells the story of the ‘Knepp experiment’, a pioneering rewilding project in West Sussex, using free-roaming grazing animals to create new habitats for wildlife. Part gripping memoir, part fascinating account of the ecology of our countryside, Wilding is, above all, an inspiring story of hope. Winner of the Richard Jefferies Society and White Horse Book Shop Literary Prize. Forced to accept that intensive farming on the heavy clay of their land at Knepp was economically unsustainable, Isabella Tree and her husband Charlie Burrell made a spectacular leap of faith: they decided to step back and let nature take over. Thanks to the introduction of free-roaming cattle, ponies, pigs and deer – proxies of the large animals that once roamed Britain – the 3,500 acre project has seen extraordinary increases in wildlife numbers and diversity in little over a decade. Extremely rare species, including turtle doves, nightingales, peregrine falcons, lesser spotted woodpeckers and purple emperor butterflies, are now breeding at Knepp, and populations of other species are rocketing. The Burrells’ degraded agricultural land has become a functioning ecosystem again, heaving with life – all by itself. Personal and inspirational, Wilding is an astonishing account of the beauty and strength of nature, when it is given as much freedom as possible. Highly Commended by the Wainwright Golden Beer Book Prize.
The Call of the Wild is a novel by Jack London, originally published in 1903. The story is set in the Yukon during the 1890s Klondike Gold Rush—a period when strong sled dogs were in high demand. The novel’s central character is a dog named Buck, a domesticated dog living at a ranch in the Santa Clara Valley of California as the story opens. Stolen from his home and sold into service as sled dog in Alaska, he reverts to a wild state. Buck is forced to fight in order to dominate other dogs in a harsh climate. Eventually he sheds the veneer of civilization, relying on primordial instincts and learned experience to emerge as a leader in the wild. This book is considered an American classic and is required reading in many schools. Xist Publishing is a digital-first publisher. Xist Publishing creates books for the touchscreen generation and is dedicated to helping everyone develop a lifetime love of reading, no matter what form it takes
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING PHENOMENON More than 6 million copies sold A Reese Witherspoon x Hello Sunshine Book Club Pick A Business Insider Defining Book of the Decade “I can’t even express how much I love this book! I didn’t want this story to end!”–Reese Witherspoon “Painfully beautiful.”–The New York Times Book Review For years, rumors of the “Marsh Girl” have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life–until the unthinkable happens. Where the Crawdads Sing is at once an exquisite ode to the natural world, a heartbreaking coming-of-age story, and a surprising tale of possible murder. Owens reminds us that we are forever shaped by the children we once were, and that we are all subject to the beautiful and violent secrets that nature keeps.
Famed naturalist John Muir (1838-1914) came to Wisconsin as a boy and studied at the University of Wisconsin. He first came to California in 1868 and devoted six years to the study of the Yosemite Valley. After work in Nevada, Utah, and Colorado, he returned to California in 1880 and made the state his home. One of the heroes of America’s conservation movement, Muir deserves much of the credit for making the Yosemite Valley a protected national park and for alerting Americans to the need to protect this and other natural wonders. My first summer in the Sierra (1911) is based on Muir’s original journals and sketches of his 1869 stay in the Sierras. Hired to supervise a San Joaquin sheep owner’s flock at the headwaters of the Merced and Tulomne Rivers, Muir sets out for the mountains in June, returning to the Valley in September. He describes the flora and fauna of the mountains as well as his visits to Yosemite and his climbs of Mt. Hoffman and other peaks in the range.
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER Winner of the Pulitzer Prize in Fiction Winner of the William Dean Howells Medal Winner of France’s Grand Prix de Littérature Américaine Finalist for the Man Booker Prize Finalist for the PEN/Jean Stein Book Award Finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award “Monumental. . . . A gigantic fable of genuine truths.” –Barbara Kingsolver, The New York Times Book Review The Overstory is a sweeping, impassioned work of activism and resistance that is also a stunning evocation of–and paean to–the natural world. From the roots to the crown and back to the seeds, Richard Powers’s twelfth novel unfolds in concentric rings of interlocking fables that range from antebellum New York to the late twentieth-century Timber Wars of the Pacific Northwest and beyond. There is a world alongside ours–fast, slow, interconnected, resourceful, magnificently inventive, and almost invisible to us. This is the story of a handful of people who learn how to see that world and who are drawn up into its unfolding catastrophe.
Living at the limits of our ordinary perception, mosses are a common but largely unnoticed element of the natural world. Gathering moss is a mix of science and personal reflection that invites readers to explore and learn from the elegantly simple lives of mosses. In this series of linked personal essays, Robin Kimmerer leads general readers and scientists alike to an understanding of how mosses live and how their lives are intertwined with the lives of countless other beings. Kimmerer explains the biology of mosses clearly and artfully, while at the same time reflecting on what these fascinating organisms have to teach us. Drawing on her experiences as a scientist, a mother, and a Native American, Kimmerer explains the stories of mosses in scientific terms as well as in the framework of indigenous ways of knowing. In her book, the natural history and cultural relationships of mosses become a powerful metaphor for ways of living in the world.
“An investigation of the emotional and physical world of the octopus”–
“A groundbreaking work about race and the American landscape, and a deep meditation on nature…wise and beautiful.”—Helen Macdonald, author of H is for Hawk A Foreword Reviews Best Book of the Year and Nautilus Silver Award Winner In me, there is the red of miry clay, the brown of spring floods, the gold of ripening tobacco. All of these hues are me; I am, in the deepest sense, colored. Dating back to slavery, Edgefield County, South Carolina—a place “easy to pass by on the way somewhere else”—has been home to generations of Lanhams. In The Home Place, readers meet these extraordinary people, including Drew himself, who over the course of the 1970s falls in love with the natural world around him. As his passion takes flight, however, he begins to ask what it means to be “the rare bird, the oddity.” By turns angry, funny, elegiac, and heartbreaking, The Home Place is a meditation on nature and belonging by an ornithologist and professor of ecology, at once a deeply moving memoir and riveting exploration of the contradictions of black identity in the rural South—and in America today. “When you’re done with The Home Place, it won’t be done with you. Its wonders will linger like everything luminous.”—Star Tribune “A lyrical story about the power of the wild…synthesizes his own family history, geography, nature, and race into a compelling argument for conservation and resilience.”—National Geographic
In a compilation of essays written during her husband’s life-threatening illness, the author shares her direct observations and meditations on the natural and unnatural world, from an awe-inspiring salmon run to a disembodied doll’s head trapped with the carcass of a whale on a remote island. Original.
A portrait of the German naturalist reveals his ongoing influence on humanity’s relationship with the natural world today, discussing such topics as his views on climate change, conservation, and nature as a resource for all life.
“Birds are astonishingly intelligent creatures. In fact, according to revolutionary new research, some birds rival primates and even humans in their remarkable forms of intelligence. Like humans, many birds have enormous brains relative to their size. Although small, bird brains are packed with neurons that allow them to punch well above their weight. In The Genius of Birds, acclaimed author Jennifer Ackerman explores the newly discovered brilliance of birds and how it came about.”–provided by publisher.
Starting with a simple question – ‘Which way am I looking?’ – Tristan Gooley blends natural science, myth, folklore and the history of travel to introduce you to the rare and ancient art of finding your way using nature’s own sign-posts, from the feel of a rock to the look of the moon. In this fully updated edition you’ll learn why some trees grow the way they do and how they can help you find your way in the countryside. You’ll discover how it’s possible to find North simply by looking at a puddle and how natural signs can be used to navigate on the open ocean and in the heart of the city. Wonderfully detailed and full of fascinating stories, this is a glorious exploration of the rediscovered art of natural navigation.
Why have island ecosystems always suffered such high rates of extinction? In our age, with all the world’s landscapes, from Tasmania to the Amazon to Yellowstone, now being carved into island-like fragments by human activity, the implications of this question are more urgent than ever. Over the past eight years, David Quammen has followed the threads of island biogeography on a globe-encircling journey of discovery.
WINNER 2014 – Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize for Non-Fiction Forget everything you think you know about global warming. The really inconvenient truth is that it’s not about carbon—it’s about capitalism. The convenient truth is that we can seize this existential crisis to transform our failed system and build something radically better. In her most provocative book yet, Naomi Klein, author of the global bestsellers The Shock Doctrine and No Logo, tackles the most profound threat humanity has ever faced: the war our economic model is waging against life on earth. Klein exposes the myths that are clouding the climate debate. We have been told the market will save us, when in fact the addiction to profit and growth is digging us in deeper every day. We have been told it’s impossible to get off fossil fuels when in fact we know exactly how to do it—it just requires breaking every rule in the “free-market” playbook: reining in corporate power, rebuilding local economies and reclaiming our democracies. We have also been told that humanity is too greedy and selfish to rise to this challenge. In fact, all around the world, the fight back is already succeeding in ways both surprising and inspiring. Climate change, Klein argues, is a civilizational wake-up call, a powerful message delivered in the language of fires, floods, storms and droughts. Confronting it is no longer about changing the light bulbs. It’s about changing the world—before the world changes so drastically that no one is safe. Either we leap—or we sink. Once a decade, Naomi Klein writes a book that redefines its era. No Logo did so for globalization. The Shock Doctrine changed the way we think about austerity. This Changes Everything is about to upend the debate about the stormy era already upon us.
This volume weaves together the Scottish otter stories from Gavin Maxwell’s three non-fiction books, Ring of Bright Water (1960), The Rocks Remain (1963), and Raven Meet Thy Brother (1969). Maxwell was both an extraordinarily evocative writer and a highly unusual man. While touring the Iraqi marshes, he was captivated by an otter and became a devoted advocate of and spokesman for the species. He moved to a remote house in the Scottish highlands, co-habiting there with three otters and living an idyllic and isolated life – at least for a while. Fate, fame, and fire conspired against this paradise, and it, too, came to an end, though the journey was filled with incident and wonder. Maxwell was also talented as an artist, and his sinuous line drawings of these amphibious and engaging creatures, and the homes they occupied, illustrate his story. This book stands as a lasting tribute to a man, his work, and his passion. It was received and has endured as a classic for its portrait not only of otters but also of a man who endured heartaches and disappointments, whose life embodied both greatness and tragedy. He writes with rare eloquence about his birth, his devotion to the beloved Scottish highlands, and the wildlife he loved, while refusing to ignore the darker aspects of his nature and of nature in its larger sense.
Addressing the moral and practical aspects of dealing with environmental issues, this study spells out the tragic consequences of the greenhouse effect and discusses options for avoiding ecological calamity. Reprint. 20,000 first printing.
States the evidence for a theory of evolution, explains how evolution takes place, and discusses instinct, hybridism, fossils, distribution, and classification.
Environmental thought and politics have become parts of mainstream cultural life in Britain. The wish to protect wildlife is now a central goal for our society, but where did these ‘green’ ideas come from? And who created the cherished institutions, such as the National Trust or the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, that are now so embedded in public life with millions of members? From the flatlands of Norfolk to the tundra-like expanse of the Flow Country in northern Scotland, acclaimed writer on nature Mark Cocker sets out on a personal quest through the British countryside to find the answers to these questions. He explores in intimate detail six special places that embody the history of conservation or whose fortunes allow us to understand why our landscape looks as it does today. We meet key characters who shaped the story of the British countryside – Victorian visionaries like Octavia Hill, founder of the National Trust, as well as brilliant naturalists such as Max Nicholson or Derek Ratcliffe, who helped build the very framework for all environmental effort. This is a book that looks to the future as well as exploring the past. It asks searching questions like who owns the land and why? And who benefits from green policies? Above all it attempts to solve a puzzle: why do the British seem to love their countryside more than almost any other nation, yet they have come to live amid one of the most denatured landscapes on Earth? Radical, provocative and original, Our Place tackles some of the central issues of our time. Yet most important of all, it tries to map out how this overcrowded island of ours could be a place fit not just for human occupants but also for its billions of wild citizens.
‘What we all need,’ said Larry, ‘is sunshine . . . a country where we can grow.’ ‘Yes, dear, that would be nice,’ agreed Mother, not really listening. ‘I had a letter from George this morning – he says Corfu’s wonderful. Why don’t we pack up and go to Greece?’ ‘Very well, dear, if you like,’ said Mother unguardedly. Escaping the ills of the British climate, the Durrell family – acne-ridden Margo, gun-toting Leslie, bookworm Lawrence and budding naturalist Gerry, along with their long-suffering mother and Roger the dog – take off for the island of Corfu. But the Durrells find that, reluctantly, they must share their various villas with a menagerie of local fauna – among them scorpions, geckos, toads, bats and butterflies. Recounted with immense humour and charm My Family and Other Animals is a wonderful account of a rare, magical childhood. ‘Durrell has an uncanny knack of discovering human as well as animal eccentricities’ Sunday Telegraph
Unearth the stories behind the natural world This collection of amazing animals, plants, rocks and minerals, and microorganisms will wow children and adults alike. With 100 remarkable items from the natural world, from orchids to opals and lichens to lizards, everyone will find something to be captivated by. Each plant, animal, and rock is shown both photographically and illustrated, and children will love poring over the detailed close-up images. Discover how the dragon blood tree got its name, why a sundew means big trouble for insects, and what on Earth a radiolarian is. The storybook descriptions let you discover the myths and legends surrounding both organisms and gemstones, as well as key facts about their natural history. From orchids to opals and lichens to lizards, this beautiful treasury lets you find the things that interest you and uncover new favorites along the way. Explore some of the myths and stories surrounding both organisms and gemstones, as well as key facts about their natural history. With reference pages packed with information you’ll go away knowing something you didn’t before, even if you return time and again. A beautiful gift for children who can’t get enough of nature, The Wonders of Nature: A Treasury is perfect for kids to explore by themselves or for bedtime stories.
“Highly informative and remarkably entertaining.” —Elle From forest trails in Korea, to islands in Finland, to eucalyptus groves in California, Florence Williams investigates the science behind nature’s positive effects on the brain. Delving into brand-new research, she uncovers the powers of the natural world to improve health, promote reflection and innovation, and strengthen our relationships. As our modern lives shift dramatically indoors, these ideas—and the answers they yield—are more urgent than ever.
“Re-centers and gives voice to a diversity of women naturalists and writers across time.” —Cultivating Place In Writing Wild, Kathryn Aalto celebrates 25 women whose influential writing helps deepen our connection to and understanding of the natural world. These inspiring wordsmiths are scholars, spiritual seekers, conservationists, scientists, novelists, and explorers. They defy easy categorization, yet they all share a bold authenticity that makes their work both distinct and universal. Part travel essay, literary biography, and cultural history, Writing Wild ventures into the landscapes and lives of extraordinary writers and encourages a new generation of women to pick up their pens, head outdoors, and start writing wild. Featured writers include Dorothy Wordsworth, Susan Fenimore Cooper, Gene Stratton-Porter, Mary Austin, and Vita Sackville-West. Nan Shepherd, Rachel Carson, Mary Oliver, Carolyn Merchant, and Annie Dillard. Gretel Ehrlich, Leslie Marmon Silko, Diane Ackerman, Robin Wall Kimmerer, and Lauret Savoy. Rebecca Solnit, Kathleen Jamie, Carolyn Finney, Helen Macdonald, and Saci Lloyd. Andrea Wulf, Camille T. Dungy, Elena Passarello, Amy Liptrot, and Elizabeth Rush.
A “remarkable memoir” (Nature) of life with an emperor penguin colony, gorgeously illustrated with 32 pages of exclusive photography For 337 days, award-winning wildlife cameraman Lindsay McCrae intimately followed 11,000 emperor penguins amid the singular beauty of Antarctica. This is his masterful chronicle of one penguin colony’s astonishing journey of life, death, and rebirth—and of the extraordinary human experience of living amongst them in the planet’s harshest environment. A miracle occurs each winter in Antarctica. As temperatures plummet 60° below zero and the sea around the remote southern continent freezes, emperors—the largest of all penguins—begin marching up to 100 miles over solid ice to reach their breeding grounds. They are the only animals to breed in the depths of this, the worst winter on the planet; and in an unusual role reversal, the males incubate the eggs, fasting for over 100 days to ensure they introduce their chicks safely into their new frozen world. My Penguin Year recounts McCrae’s remarkable adventure to the end of the Earth. He observed every aspect of a breeding emperor’s life, facing the inevitable sacrifices that came with living his childhood dream, and grappling with the personal obstacles that, being over 15,000km away from the comforts of home, almost proved too much. Out of that experience, he has written an unprecedented portrait of Antarctica’s most extraordinary residents.
A Puffin Book – stories that last a lifetime. Puffin Modern Classics are relaunched under a new logo: A Puffin Book. There are 20 titles to collect in the series, listed below, all with exciting new covers and child-friendly endnotes. TARKA THE OTTER is the classic story of an otter living in the Devonshire countryside which captures the feel of life in the wild as seen through the otter’s own eyes. The story’s atmosphere and detail make it easy to see why Tarka has become one of the best-loved creatures in world literature. Henry William Williamson was born in 1895 in Brockley, south-east London. The then semi-rural location provided easy access to the countryside, and he developed a deep love of nature throughout his childhood. He became a prolific author known for his natural and social history novels. He won the Hawthornden Prize for literatrure in 1928 for Tarka the Otter.
The fiftieth anniversary edition of the classic story of Elsa the lioness and the woman who cared for her.
New York Times bestselling author Douglas Adams and zoologist Mark Carwardine take off around the world in search of exotic, endangered creatures. Join them as they encounter the animal kingdom in its stunning beauty, astonishing variety, and imminent peril: the giant Komodo dragon of Indonesia, the helpless but loveable Kakapo of New Zealand, the blind river dolphins of China, the white rhinos of Zaire, the rare birds of Mauritius island in the Indian Ocean. Hilarious and poignant—as only Douglas Adams can be—Last Chance to See is an entertaining and arresting odyssey through the Earth’s magnificent wildlife galaxy. Praise for Last Chance to See “Lively, sharply satirical, brilliantly written . . . shows how human care can undo what human carelessness has wrought.”—The Atlantic “These authors don’t hesitate to present the alarming facts: More than 1,000 species of animals (and plants) become extinct every year. . . . Perhaps Adams and Carwardine, with their witty science, will help prevent such misadventures in the future.”—Boston Sunday Herald “Very funny and moving . . . The glimpses of rare fauna seem to have enlarged [Adams’s] thinking, enlivened his world; and so might the animals do for us all, if we were to help them live.”—The Washington Post Book World “[Adams] invites us to enter into a conspiracy of laughter and caring.”—Los Angeles Times “Amusing . . . thought-provoking . . . Its details on the heroic efforts being made to save these animals are inspirational.”—The New York Times Book Review
Last updated on October 16, 2021