Book Review: The Insect Crisis

The subtitle of the must-read book The Insect Crisis by Oliver Milman is The Fall of the Tiny Empires that Run the World. Tiny empires indeed. Consider the following: Three out of four species on this planet are insects. There are more species of assassin fly on this planet (7,500+) than the entire world of …

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Call For Creative Submissions to Ecocene

Passing along an interesting writing opportunity… Ecocene: Cappadocia Journal of Environmental Humanities Stories are how we come to know the world. They shape our propensity to believe in, engage with, and respond to, the world around us. They inspire and confront, open and close, breathe and compress, the landscape of imaginative possibility. With each issue …

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Eco-Activism 101: Not on My Watch

Not on My Watch: How a Renegade Whale Biologist Took on Governments and Industry to Save Wild Salmon by Alexandra Morton Guest book review by Gene Helfman. A colleague of mine, a federal agency biologist, finishes his emails with, “If you’re not outraged, you’re not paying attention.” Alexandra Morton has been outraged for decades. Not only …

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The best environmental books we’ve read in 2021

In 2016, we began compiling lists of the best books we read that year (new or old, it didn’t matter). And now here we are in 2021, and we’ve got another wonderful list of the best environmental books we’ve read this year. These may not be the books you’ll find in the top lists of …

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Listen, We All Bleed: The artists who are helping us hear what animals have to say

So much of animal activism is focused around what one sees — witnessing the beauty as well as the suffering of the animals we share this planet with. But what about focusing less on one’s eyes and more on one’s ears? In Listen, We All Bleed Mandy-Suzanne Wong has compiled a rich array of essays …

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Calling writers aged 18 to 25 for the Bell Prize essay contest

Here is an excellent writing opportunity for young writers passionate about the West. Tom Bell founded High Country News in 1970. The Bell Prize honors thoughtful writing about the West by writers aged 18 to 25. We’re looking for stories about what it means to inhabit the Western U.S. at this time in history, whether …

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Kinship: Belonging in a World of Relations

I’m pleased to mention that EcoLit Books contributor The Center for Humans and Nature has published a five-book set called Kinship: Belonging in a World of Relations. Kinship: Belonging in a World of Relations is a lively series that explores our deep interconnections with the living world. These five Kinship volumes—Planet, Place, Partners, Persons, Practice—offer essays, interviews, poetry, …

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Book review: A Most Remarkable Creature

In A Most Remarkable Creature: The Hidden Life and Epic Journey of the World’s Smartest Bird of Prey Jonathan Meiburg has crafted an epic ode to the caracara, a long-overlooked (and often derided) group of birds who deserves more attention and more protection. There are about ten species of caracara and Meiburg takes us around …

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Book Review: Willodeen by Katherine Applegate

Katherine Applegate’s Willodeen, out today from Feiwel and Friends, aptly begins with an epigraph quoting Greta Thunberg: “I have learned you are never too small to make a difference.”  This middle-grade novel geared towards tweens, but also appropriate for younger readers, explores surprisingly mature topics in a way that is still accessible and engaging for …

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Culture is Home: Becoming Wild: How Animal Cultures Raise Families, Create Beauty, and Achieve Peace

Guest book review by Gene Helfman. MacArthur Fellow Carl Safina established himself among the legion of environmental journalists with his first book, the award-winning Song for the Blue Ocean. In Song, he detailed the causes of and solutions to declining fish populations, especially those overharvested in commercial fisheries. In (also award-winning) Eye of the Albatross, he lamented the …

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Beyond The Human Realm

Beyond the Human Realm, A Novel by Gene Helfman (Luminare Press, July, 2021 Review by JoeAnn Hart             It’s not an easy feat to write in an animal POV without the voice seeming weird or childish, but Gene Helfman pulls it off. Do I want to read an entire novel in an orca POV? Probably not. …

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Introducing the journal Ecological Citizen

We recently added The Ecological Citizen to our growing list of outlets for environmental writing. Editor Joe Gray was kind enough to answer a few questions about the journal: Tell us about The Ecological CitizenThe Ecological Citizen is an independent, free-to-access online journal that provides a forum for inspiring and mobilizing discussion with an Earth-centred …

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Book Review: Once There Were Wolves by Charlotte McConaghy

Charlotte McConaghy’s Once There Were Wolves shares much in common with her previous novel, Migrations — the journey of a troubled young woman hoping to save the animals she loves, while also fighting the demons of her past. Yet despite these echoes, Once There Were Wolves is entirely unique in its story of biologist Inti Flynn, who …

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