Heirlooms are book reviews of works that have played an important role in the environmental movement or have otherwise contributed to the literature of environmental consciousness.
University of Georgia Press, 2019
Reviewed by JULIE DUNLAP
A fast eroding coastline baffled author Rick Van Noy on a recent drive through Louisiana’s bayou country.
Green Writers Press, 2019
Reviewed by JENNA GERSIE
The Secret Lives of Glaciers is best read with a cup of coffee. In her acknowledgments, geographer and glaciologist M Jackson thanks her friends who “helped me access the ice, provided support in the community, and poured more coffee” (xi). It is the conversations and observations over caffeine that make the book, for it is the stories about ice, more than the ice itself, that interest Jackson here.
Reviewed by KALI LIGHTFOOT
At the end of the author’s time in Upernarvik in March, she reflects that “The ice was beginning to disappear—and before it vanished I wanted to learn what words it would teach me.”
One Size Fits None:
A Farm Girl’s Search for the Promise of Regenerative Agriculture
by Stephanie Anderson
University of Nebraska Press, 2019
Reviewed by KATRINA GERSIE-SPRONK
Even readers who are not directly involved in food production will come away from this book as more informed consumers, able to make better decisions about purchasing the food that sustains us, and with a much deeper understanding of how agricultural production has changed. And how it will—how it must—change again.
Madrona Arts Press, 2018
Reviewed by STEPHEN BLACK
As she makes clear throughout the book, when it comes to the health of watersheds, things look bad, desperate even, but Hartel has chosen to write a manifesto instead of an elegy.
Belt Publishing, 2017
Reviewed by ALEXANDER STINTON
Our guide shows the ways in which the river has continued to evolve, defining and redefining its course (not to mention local cultures) well after the last glaciers receded from this part of the country.
Southeast Missouri State University Press, 2017
Reviewed by RAY HUDSON
This is a mastery I have to trust. This is poetry at its most powerful; that is to say, at its most subversive. Images and lines and music all combine to transform me even as they carry me from beginning to end in one deft movement. I accept what the poem says unconditionally whether or not, on reflection, I buy into the philosophical theories at its core.
Riverhead Books, 2017
Reviewed by SIERRA DICKEY
As you acclimate to the narrator’s consciousness, you’ll realize that some things are obviated so that other things can sing. All of Bennett’s true focal points are microscopic (the plastic cook nobs on her stove, the way fruit sits in a ceramic bowl, the party guests in spatial relation to the chaise lounge, the sounds of frogs in rain).
Homebound Publications, 2017
Reviewed by TIM WEED
A keen and patient observer of the New England landscape, Cummings beckons us into her poems with images so transfixing that they’re impossible not to visualize.
Michigan State University Press, 2016
Reviewed by JAMES CREWS
Gratitude and wonder radiate from each of Davis's poems, rendering them sacraments for readers lucky and openhearted enough to receive them. Surely Winterkill will solidify Davis's reputation as one of our most fearless, attentive chroniclers of the natural world, which he shows, over and over, must also include humans.