Science Reviews

Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shore

Though many books have been written about climate change, in Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shore, Elizabeth Rush offers not a scientist’s view but that of an artist translating statistics into elegy for the estuaries, the salt marshes, the shoreline wetlands of the world, and more particularly, of her childhood home. By speaking the names of the beings, both human and otherwise, that are vanishing before our eyes as shorelines become inundated, she faces her own grief and helps her readers to do so as well. Recommended by Kelly

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ISBN: 9781571313676
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Milkweed Editions - June 12th, 2018

FINALIST FOR THE PULITZER PRIZE IN GENERAL NONFICTION
WINNER OF THE NATIONAL OUTDOOR BOOK AWARD
A CHICAGO TRIBUNE TOP TEN BOOK OF 2018
A GUARDIAN, NPR's SCIENCE FRIDAY, PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, AND LIBRARY JOURNAL BEST BOOK OF 2018


American Wolf

American Wolf by Nate Blakeslee reads like a novel but it's nonfiction--well-reported, in-depth nonfiction that presents an intimate portrait of a beautiful creature. The book is ostensibly a biography of Oh-Six, a female wolf who leads a fearsome Yellowstone pack. But the story it tells is much bigger: politics, livelihood, regionalism, class, survival, and landscape all figure into this tragic and compelling tale. The book is part legal thriller, part biography, part nature book, and part rural cultural analysis, but it's 100% unforgettable. Recommended by Danny

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$28.00
ISBN: 9781101902783
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Published: Crown - October 17th, 2017

A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The enthralling true story of the rise and reign of O-Six, the celebrated Yellowstone wolf, and the people who loved or feared her.
 


The Home Place: Memoirs of a Colored Man's Love Affair with Nature

In a series of linked essays about his childhood in rural Edgefield, South Carolina, Lanham reclaims an environmental love and ethos for people of color. He is a self-described "eco-addict," who loves nature because "I've yet to have a wild creature question my identity.

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$24.00
ISBN: 9781571313157
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Published: Milkweed Editions - October 11th, 2016

"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." From these fertile soils of love, land, identity, family, and race emerges The Home Place, a big-hearted, unforgettable memoir by ornithologist and professor of ecology J. Drew Lanham.


Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are?

Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are? by Frans de Waal. The short answer is--we're getting there. The gist of this fascinating book is that we've long been using the wrong measures for things like "consciousness," "self-awareness," and "intention," all once considered qualities possessed only by humans. But as the many experiments that primatologist de Waal recounts show, if you use the proper controls and keep an open mind, you'll find animals are far more "like" us than we give them credit--which changes everything. Recommended by Kelly

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$27.95
ISBN: 9780393246186
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Published: W. W. Norton & Company - April 25th, 2016

What separates your mind from an animal's? Maybe you think it's your ability to design tools, your sense of self, or your grasp of past and future--all traits that have helped us define ourselves as the planet's preeminent species. But in recent decades, these claims have eroded, or even been disproven outright, by a revolution in the study of animal cognition.


Shrinking the Earth

STAFF REVIEW: Widely recognized as the nation's first environmental historian, KU professor emeritus of history, Don Worster, has just released his latest book: Shrinking the Earth: The Rise and Decline of American Abundance (Oxford University Press). Each chapter charts the history of North Americans' slow realization of the limits of their continent's natural resources.

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$27.95
ISBN: 9780199844951
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Published: Oxford University Press, USA - February 5th, 2016

The discovery of the Americas around 1500 AD was an extraordinary watershed in human experience. It gave rise to the modern period of human ecology, a phenomenon global in scope that set in motion profound changes in almost every society on earth.


Gut

STAFF REVIEW: For soft science writing about the digestive system, I thought no one could equal Mary Roach's GULP, but Giulia Enders has done just that with GUT. Though not as roll-on-the-floor funny as Roach, Enders' science is much more detailed and, surprisingly, easier to understand than Roach's. With plenty of her own childhood digestive issues prompting her, Enders went into medical school and specialized in microbiology.

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By Giulia Enders, Jill Enders (Illustrator), David Shaw (Translator)
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ISBN: 9781771641494
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Greystone Books - May 24th, 2015

A New York Times Bestseller

A cheeky up-close and personal guide to the secrets and science of our digestive system


What There Is to Say We Have Said

STAFF REVIEW: I loved WHAT THERE IS TO SAY WE HAVE SAID, a collection of letters between Southern novelist Eudora Welty and her editor William Maxwell. The two had honed the art of letter writing to a fine art and show readers what we will miss in an age of electronic ephemeral communication. Their intimacy and humor add a delicious layer to all we already know of their lives.

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$27.99
ISBN: 9780547750323
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Published: Mariner Books - May 22nd, 2012

Eavesdrop on one of the most celebrated literary friendships in American letters

"An epistolary feast for literary fans [and] a confidence booster for aspiring writers everywhere.


Cat Sense by John Bradshaw

STAFF REVIEW: Hey all you cat lovers out there. Feline scientist John Bradshaw's book CAT SENSE offers not only intriguing new insights into little understood behavior but also excellent natural history about our little charges. You'll never look at them the same way again. Recommended by Kelly.

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ISBN: 9780465031016
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Basic Books (AZ) - September 10th, 2013

Cats have been popular household pets for thousands of years, and their numbers only continue to rise. Today there are three cats for every dog on the planet, and yet cats remain more mysterious, even to their most adoring owners.


The Creative Brain: The Science of Genius by Nancy Andreasen

A fascinating look at the role imagination, creativity, and play have in everyday life, even if you're not a genius. Part nature, part nurture, creativity has the opportunity to transform personal and social spheres. Recommended by Chip.

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$15.00
ISBN: 9780452287815
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Published: Plume - October 31st, 2006

Shakespeare’s tragic plays, Mozart’s sublime symphonies, Einstein’s revolutionary theories—how did these geniuses create such magnificent and highly original works? Were their brains different from those of ordinary people?


The Homing Instinct: Meaning and Mystery in Animal Migration by Bernd Heinrich

Nature-writer Bernd Heinrich has a new book out, a cause for celebration! THE HOMING
INSTINCT reveals not only the often arduous and mysterious natural history of migration of other species, but, in it, Heinrich draws moving parallels between their visceral pull toward home and ours.

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ISBN: 9780547198484
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt - April 8th, 2014

Acclaimed scientist and author Bernd Heinrich has returned every year since boyhood to a beloved patch of western Maine woods. What is the biology in humans of this deep-in-the-bones pull toward a particular place, and how is it related to animal homing?


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