Bear Markets and Beyond: A Bestiary of Business Terms

Why do animals lend themselves to economic and financial jargon? Perhaps it’s because we need visual and tangible ways or relating to concepts that are so vague, confusing or downright opaque. Bear Markets and Beyond by Dhruti Shah and Dominic Bailey provides an A-Z compendium of animal financial jargon. From an “alligator spread” that has …

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Book Review: Touching Creatures, Touching Spirit by Judy Grahn

The stories and essays of Touching Creatures, Touching Spirit: Living in a Sentient World form a beautiful tapestry of communications across species and consciousness. From grateful dragonflies to fatherless strawberries to companionable stones, poet and activist Judy Grahn details meaningful connections from her own experiences of the sentient world. Throughout her firsthand accounts, she weaves in histories …

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Book Review: The Meaning of Birds by Simon Barnes

In The Meaning of Birds, Simon Barnes traces the history of birds—as well as humans’ relationships and interactions with them—over several millennia and across multiple continents. Barnes is a UK-based nature writer, so North American readers will enjoy an opportunity to become more familiar with Britain’s backyard birds, such as the wood pigeon, the Scottish …

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Picture Book Review: A Garden to Save the Birds by Wendy McClure; illustrated by Beatriz Mayumi

Beautifully illustrated, the heartwarming story of A Garden to Save the Birds begins with the “BAP!” of a bird flying into a window. Young Callum and his sister Emmy run outside to see the bird flying away. At first, Callum and Emmy are confused: why did the bird fly into their window? Realizing the window’s reflection of …

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Book Review: Irreplaceable by Julian Hoffman

In Irreplaceable: The Fight to Save Our Wild Places, Julian Hoffman shows us endangered habitats and the creatures who inhabit them—as well as the humans who are fighting to save these fragile landscapes. He puts us vividly within these places, portraying just how special and vulnerable they are, and also shows us the passion, dedication, …

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Book Review: MIGRATIONS by Charlotte McConaghy

Migrations is a stunningly beautiful novel about a woman who has always been running—from her childhood, her mistakes, her memories—and this time, she’s traveling from Greenland to Antarctica, following the world’s last flock of Arctic terns on their final migration.  As the novel opens, Franny Stone approaches the captain of the only boat who might …

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Announcing Writing for Animals: A 4-week writing program

I’m pleased to announce a rather unique program to be taught next month by myself and Midge Raymond. I hope you can join us… Writing for Animals is a four-week writing program designed to help writers become more effective advocates for animals. Using the book Writing for Animals as a text, we’ll examine the ways in which …

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Book Review: World of Wonders; In Praise of Fireflies, Whale Sharks, and Other Astonishments

No one sees nature quite like a poet and Aimee Nezhukumatathil proves that in World of Wonders, her first book of prose. This collection of essays centers around Nezhukumatathil’s lifelong interactions with and observations of the natural world. Born to a Filipina mother and a father from South India, Nezhukumatathil grew up all over the United States due to the demands of her mother’s job as a psychiatrist, and was immersed in landscapes from New York to Arizona. She writes from both the poet’s perspective and as a person of color in a white-privileged world.

Bird by Word: Two reviews of American Birds: A Literary Companion

As I finished reading American Birds: A Literary Companion I realized that there were two reviews I could write: the “typical American birder” review and the “atypical vegan birder” review. And that, in the end, I needed to write both reviews. Let’s begin with the “typical American birder” review. In this review, I admire the …

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What I’m reading in the New York Times

A few articles that I bookmarked in the Times over the past two weeks… How Do the New Plant-Based Burgers Stack Up? We Taste-Tested Them I agree that Impossible Burgers and Beyond Meat rank highest, though I’ve also been a long-time fan of Field Roast. But I always find it odd when taste tests include …

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Book Review: The Humane Gardener

What in the world could be inhumane about gardening? Plenty, it turns out, thanks to this beautifully produced and incredibly important book by Nancy Lawson: The Humane Gardener: Nurturing a Backyard Habitat for Wildlife. The Humane Gardener makes a persuasive case for rethinking conventional knowledge about what a garden or yard should look like and …

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Review: Edge of Awe: Experiences of the Malheur-Steens Country

Funny how a word can change on you. When I moved to Oregon nearly a decade ago, I first heard about the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, about the Steens mountain range, and the diversity of bird species that migrate through this region. Back then, Malheur meant wilderness. But in 2016, after group of armed men …

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“Penguins are in trouble”

This from a sobering research report published last week by some of the world’s leading experts on penguins. The report notes that “more than half of the world’s 18 penguin species are declining.” The three species most in danger are: African penguin Galápagos penguin Yellow-eyed penguin (seen below in New Zealand) The report notes that …

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