Book Review: Wild Chorus: Finding Harmony with Whales, Wolves, and Other Animals

Guest book review by Gene Helfman. “…a woman’s place…is in the wild.” This remarkable book is a memoir, a unique lesson in natural history, a love poem to the wild, and a plea for peaceful coexistence with the natural world. Brenda Peterson is a multiple-award-winning, tremendously versatile, and prolific author, having published adult novels (mystery, drama, humor), …

Read more

Unintended Unsplash: The surprising journeys of animal photographs

A few years ago, I was standing alongside Bear Creek, a small waterway in Southern Oregon, camera in hand, when a river otter approached. I captured the photo, thrilled to have not only seen a river otter so close but one that apparently was not so afraid of me. The otter quickly disappeared underwater and, …

Read more

Book Review: The Rotting Whale

While a good many mystery novels have environmental themes, it’s rare to find a book specifically labeled “eco-mystery”—but Jann Eyrich’s new series is just that.  The Rotting Whale introduces Hugo Sandoval, a San Francisco building inspector specializing (despite his aquaphobia) in port projects. Though his job in the city has an environmental angle (he hopes to …

Read more

Q&A with Bill Streever, author of A Sea Full of Turtles

EcoLit contributor Bill Streever has a new book out, A Sea Full of Turtles, and it provides a hopeful antidote to the more dystopian environmental literature in bookstores today. Bill’s book left me feeling optimistic. I hope it does for you as well. I recently asked Bill about the book and here’s what he had …

Read more

Book Review: The Pelican Tide

Sharon J. Wishnow’s debut novel, The Pelican Tide—set on Grand Isle, Louisiana, in 2010, just before the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill—is both an intense environmental disaster story and a heartwarming story of a family finding their way back to one another after a series of devastating events. Josie Babineaux is a chef, mother, newly …

Read more

Book Review: You Are Here

Ada Limón recalls that soon after being named the 24th Poet Laureate of the United States, she found herself “staring out the window of my office in the Library of Congress thinking, I just want us all to write poems and save the planet.” If any book could help bring about these lofty (perhaps intertwined?) …

Read more

Aelian’s On the Nature of Animals

A toad can kill just by belching, and the lust of the octopus is blamed for its short lifespan. To produce a mule, the horse owner must give the mare a bad haircut to shame her into having sex with a donkey. The hedgehog is considered a spiteful animal because it urinates on itself when caught, unlike the lynx, who hides its urine until it forms a gem stone.

Such are a few of the many nuggets of animal lore recorded in Aelian’s On the Nature of Animals, a translation of De Natura Animalium by the third century Roman writer Claudius Aelianus, better know as Aelian.

New and forthcoming environmental books (June 2024)

Here’s the latest batch of books to come across our desks — enjoy! The first book is written by the founder of an amazing chicken rescue organization, Sweet Peeps, based in Mobile, Alabama. If you’ve never visited an animal sanctuary (not a zoo) you’re missing out. And you don’t have to go to Alabama to …

Read more

Book Review: The Secret History of Bigfoot

It was while working on a film script set in the Pacific Northwest that journalist John O’Connor began to see Bigfoot everywhere: “On CBD oil and air fresheners. On car polish and coronavirus masks. On scented candles and Nalgene bottles and maple syrup and vile, undrinkable IPA.”  But is Bigfoot an “actual zoological possibility or …

Read more

Book Review: Our Kindred Creatures: The birth of the American animal rights movement

Imagine it is 1866 and you are strolling the streets of New York City. The first thing you might notice are the hundreds upon hundreds of horses pulling people in packed trolleys up and down the streets and avenues, the closest thing at the time to subway cars. You may find yourself suddenly surrounded not …

Read more

Book Review: Casey Huegel’s wonderfully detailed Cleaning up the Bomb Factory: Grassroots Activism and Nuclear Waste in the Midwest

Too often, environmental writers fail to capture the complexities that make their genre so interesting. Instead, they tell tales of good versus evil, of right against wrong. While parts of many stories boil down to something at least resembling black and white, few complete stories—at least the ones worth telling—are so simple. Most require convoluted narratives describing more …

Read more

Book Review: Of Cattle and Men: Heavy is the hand that holds the stun gun

There is a conversation, repeated several times, during the powerful novella Of Cattle and Men by Paula Maia, translated by Zoë Perry: “Like they say in these parts: as long as there’s a cow in this world, there will be a man keen to kill it.”“And another keen to eat it,” concludes Edgar Wilson. Edgar …

Read more

Book Review: What a Bee Knows by Stephen Buchmann

In pollinator ecologist Stephen Buchmann’s What a Bee Knows: Exploring the Thoughts, Memories, and Personalities of Bees, the author makes a compelling case for why we need to pay closer attention to bees (and to protect them), offering stories and anecdotes from research and observation that highlight the fascinating lives of these extraordinary creatures.

Book Review: Entangled Life

Funny the difference a word makes. Restaurants generally don’t advertise “fungi” on their menus. But “mushrooms” and “truffles” are a different story. Even though they are the same thing. Which leads me to a book that took me out of the animal kingdom and into the fungi kingdom, a far more populous and less understood …

Read more

Item added to cart.
0 items - $0.00