Nature

This Is Your Mind on Plants by Michael Pollan - Book Review

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$28.00
ISBN: 9780593296905
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Published: Penguin Press - July 6th, 2021

In Pollan’s latest, he combines his interest in consciousness-changing from How to Change Your Mind with the gardening and plants for which he is justly famous. The first section is a paranoid dispatch from the height of the drug war on opium poppies. The second and strongest section of the book turns to coffee and tea and how the caffeine molecule was central to industrialization, capitalism, and the modern world. In the third and final section, Pollan turns his attention to mescaline--”the eating of peyote by white people [is] in a long line of nonmetaphorical takings from Native Americans.” This Is Your Mind on Plants is a stimulating, enjoyable and always fascinating blend of history, science, and memoir. ~ Reviewed by Dafydd Wood


The Last Diving Horse in America: Rescuing Gamal and Other Animals--Lessons in Living and Loving by Cynthia A. Branigan - Book Review

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The Last Diving Horse in America: Rescuing Gamal and Other Animals--Lessons in Living and Loving Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781101871959
Availability: Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Pantheon - September 28th, 2021

When the disturbing, surreal spectacle of diving horses finally concluded in 1980, Branigan bought Gamal, the last equine to take the plunge. In her blue-ribbon narrative, Branigan describes how her dedication to Gamal, and eventually hundreds of other animals, was profusely repaid by their own unfettered devotion. ~ Reviewed by Mike Hare


Pastoral Song: A Farmer's Journey by James Rebanks - Book Review

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$28.99
ISBN: 9780063073272
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Published: Custom House - August 3rd, 2021

I cannot truly verbalize how important I think this book is. Not only is it poetic, and beautiful in it’s setting, but it explains how we got to where we are in our collective climate disaster, specifically through the past few generations of farmers. Not so long ago, our farmers were able to work with the land, and could care deeply about the wildlife they shared it with, common practices enabled them to thrive hand in hand. Then chemicals became commonly applied to the land and so began the vicious cycle of monocrop farming on a grand scale. What this led to, is the death of wildlife, the soil itself and the diversity of food crops, which brought everything to its knees. The genius of Rebank’s book is that it so beautifully describes how quickly we got here, and so, if the collective will is strong enough, how quickly we can return, to not only the idyll, but the way of life, not only for us, but our wildlife, and ultimately our planet. A must read for all! ~ Reviewed by Becky Doherty


To Speak for the Trees: My Life's Journey from Ancient Celtic Wisdom to a Healing Vision of the Forest by Diana Beresford-Kroeger - Book Review

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$24.50
ISBN: 9780735275072
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Published: Random House Canada - September 24th, 2019

In this marvelous memoir Diana takes us into the world of Celtic Earth learning (some where between Druidry, the Brehorn Laws which were ancient 1000 years ago and the modern sciences of Biochemistry & Botany ( Beresford-Kroger’s expertise). There are so many levels of learning in this book where Diana educates and inspires us to look to the past and blend modern science to heal and save the future all the while telling us the amazing story of her own life. ~ Reviewed by Maeve Noonan


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

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A Shape in the Dark: Living and Dying with Brown Bears Cover Image
$17.95
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


Swimming to the Top of the Tide by Patricia Hanlon - Book Review

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Swimming to the Top of the Tide: Finding Life Where Land and Water Meet Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781942658870
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Published: Bellevue Literary Press - June 8th, 2021

A beautiful, lyrical book that takes us under the surface of the marshy coastline of New England. Hanlon introduces us to the unique ecology of the area where freshwater meets saltwater, from the fully immersive perspective of the swimmer. I thoroughly enjoyed it. ~ Reviewed by Becky Doherty


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