A Shape in the Dark: Living and Dying with Brown Bears by Bjorn Dihle - Book Review

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ISBN: 9781680513097
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Published: Mountaineers Books - March 1st, 2021

Bjorn Dihle grew up in the vicinity of Admiralty Island in Alaska - a place that I will never experience a walk through. A place that I would identify on a map as Grizzly Land. His exceptional memoir portrays many personal encounters with the great brown bears of Alaska. But the book is much more than this. Through his educational narrative - whether as a solo hiker for weeks through some of the wildest lands on earth, as tourist guide, hunter or historian - readers vicariously experience the rich and unique ecosystems that comprise this majestic region and what it would be like to wake in the darkness of your tent to the howl of wolves or the cracking sound of a salmon's skull between a bear's jaw. And what have some of the most experienced woodsmen employed to walk away with their very lives when confronted with an agitated 1500 pound grizzly? Simple, gentle phrases. "I am here." "I am sorry." "I am leaving." "Thank you for not killing me." ~ Reviewed by Nancy Scheemaker