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Book Review: South Pole Station

In Book Reviews, Climate Change, Fiction by Jacki Skole0 Comments

Ashley Shelby’s debut novel, South Pole Station, takes readers to the bottom of the earth for a wry, multi-layered story that tightly packs art, science, polar history, climate change, politics, humor, and human relationships into a vivid tale of courage and redemption. The novel’s central character is thirty-year-old Cooper Gosling, whose life has hit its nadir. Cooper’s art career is going nowhere, her relationship with her parents is strained, and her twin brother’s suicide has left her emotionally unmoored. Seeking something—there’s an ambiguousness to what that might be—Cooper applies to the National Science Foundation’s year-long Artist & Writer’s Program at …

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The best environmental books we’ve read in 2016

In Animal Behavior, Animal Rights, Birds, Book Publishers, Book Reviews, Climate Change, Conservation, Endangered Species, Fiction, Nonfiction by John Yunker0 Comments

I polled our contributors to see what books they’ll remember best from 2016. And here we have it — some of which we’ve reviewed and some of which we hope to still…   Anna Monders Last of the Giants: The Rise and Fall of Earth’s Most Dominant Species by Jeff Campbell   Midge Raymond The Invention of Nature by Andrea Wulf This book examines the life of the oft-forgotten founder of the modern environmentalist movement, Alexander von Humboldt, and his story is a timely one, especially in an era in which climate change is still not receiving the attention it …

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Book Review: The Invention of Nature by Andrea Wulf

In Book Reviews, Climate Change, Conservation, Nonfiction by Midge Raymond0 Comments

The Invention of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt’s New World by Andrea Wulf examines the life of the oft-forgotten founder of the modern environmentalist movement. Alexander von Humboldt was a German naturalist and explorer who, despite having his name attached to natural wonders across the globe, is far less well known than those who drew their inspiration from him, including Charles Darwin, Henry David Thoreau, John Muir, Rachel Carson, and James Lovelock. Wulf’s fascinating book is thoroughly researched and annotated and includes drawings and portraits of Humboldt and his travels. Like so many naturalists, Humboldt was not a “people person” but …

Story Magazine accepting submissions for Un/Natural World issue

In Climate Change, For Writers, Journals and Magazines, Oceans, Trees, Writing Opportunities by Midge Raymond0 Comments

Story Magazine is accepting submissions of prose for a new issue devoted to the environment: Climate change is one of the most significant issues of our time. How do we tell stories of it? How do its stories inform us? For Issue #4, send your best work in any form that explores the natural and built worlds here on Earth. Glaciers and cityscapes. Flora and fauna and concrete. From the pastoral all the way to Mega City One.   The deadline for this issue is July 15, 2015. Click here for complete details.

Film Review: Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret

In Animal Rights, Climate Change, Conservation, Education, Endangered Species, Oceans, Organic Farming, Pollution, Trees, Veganism by Midge Raymond0 Comments

Okay, so this isn’t a book review — but it’s such an important documentary that I wanted to review it here on EcoLit Books. (The book connection: As you watch the film, you’ll learn about a few books to add to your reading list, including Comfortably Unaware and The World Peace Diet.) Cowspiracy (which is currently still available for its special Earth Day price of $1) covers the impact of animal agriculture on the planet — it’s the number-one contributor to human-induced climate change and affects everything from the rainforests to the oceans — and why some of the biggest environmental organizations never talk about …

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Book Review: The Drowned World by J.G. Ballard

In Book Reviews, Climate Change, Fiction by Shel Graves1 Comment

Read this in the heat of August — languorous, sweltering, submerged. It begins, “Soon it would be too hot.” J.G. Ballard’s The Drowned World is a classic in the growing genre of climate fiction — fiction that brings attention to climate change. It’s not about the cause of a manmade global catastrophe (For this, Martin Amis, in the introduction to the 50th Anniversary edition, recommends Ballard’s The Drought 1964), but it does sink the reader quickly into the effect of a world grown prehistorically hot and inhospitable to human life. The change is quickly summarized in dialogue, “Well, one could …

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Book Review: Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver

In Book Reviews, Climate Change, Endangered Species, Fiction by Midge Raymond1 Comment

Barbara Kingsolver’s Flight Behavior does all that a great work of eco-fiction should, addressing the issues (climate change) without sacrificing the story (a woman whose small-town world is broken wide open by a mysterious act of nature). Dellarobia Turnbow, married at seventeen due to a pregnancy in which she lost the baby, is a decade later still married, tied to her two young children and husband’s family farm. She escapes emotionally through wild crushes on various men—and one day, planning to go through with an affair, she heads into the mountains for the rendezvous, only to find a “lake of fire” …

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Book Review: Oceana, by Ted Danson

In Book Reviews, Nonfiction by JoeAnn Hart1 Comment

Cheers “Sam Writes a Book” FADE IN: INT. BAR – HAPPY HOUR IT’S AN AVERAGE NIGHT. USUAL CUSTOMERS PLUS REGULARS. SAM IS POURING A BEER FROM THE TAP AND CARLA AND COACH ARE TIDYING UP THE ROOM. FRASIER SITS AT THE BAR AND SAM PUTS THE BEER DOWN IN FRONT OF HIM.  FRASIER Well, I hear congratulations are in order, Sam. You, an author. Will wonders never cease?  SAM Thank you, Frasier. Coming from you, that’s quite a compliment.  CARLA A book? Your life in the Red Sox? CLIFF Your life as a drunk? SAM PICKS UP A GLASS AND …

Book Review: The Revenge of GAIA

In Book Reviews, Climate Change, Nonfiction, Oceans, Pollution by Midge Raymond0 Comments

The Revenge of Gaia: Earth’s Climate Crisis & The Fate of Humanity by James Lovelock I began reading about Gaia after editing the second book in Blair Richmond’s Lithia Trilogy, The Ghost Runner, in which an environmental studies professor brings up the Gaia hypothesis in class. I was intrigued by the idea that the earth is a living, breathing entity that might defend itself against threats. Of course, this glimpse of Gaia was in a fictional context, and I wanted to learn more about the origins of Gaia. So I began reading the work of James Lovelock, the independent scientist …