The Wild Trees

The Wild Trees

Author: Richard Preston

Publisher: Random House Trade Paperbacks

Published: 2008-02-12

Total Pages: 322

ISBN-13: 0812975596

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Hidden away in foggy, uncharted rain forest valleys in Northern California are the largest and tallest organisms the world has ever sustained–the coast redwood trees, Sequoia sempervirens. Ninety-six percent of the ancient redwood forests have been destroyed by logging, but the untouched fragments that remain are among the great wonders of nature. The biggest redwoods have trunks up to thirty feet wide and can rise more than thirty-five stories above the ground, forming cathedral-like structures in the air. Until recently, redwoods were thought to be virtually impossible to ascend, and the canopy at the tops of these majestic trees was undiscovered. In The Wild Trees, Richard Preston unfolds the spellbinding story of Steve Sillett, Marie Antoine, and the tiny group of daring botanists and amateur naturalists that found a lost world above California, a world that is dangerous, hauntingly beautiful, and unexplored. The canopy voyagers are young—just college students when they start their quest—and they share a passion for these trees, persevering in spite of sometimes crushing personal obstacles and failings. They take big risks, they ignore common wisdom (such as the notion that there’s nothing left to discover in North America), and they even make love in hammocks stretched between branches three hundred feet in the air. The deep redwood canopy is a vertical Eden filled with mosses, lichens, spotted salamanders, hanging gardens of ferns, and thickets of huckleberry bushes, all growing out of massive trunk systems that have fused and formed flying buttresses, sometimes carved into blackened chambers, hollowed out by fire, called “fire caves.” Thick layers of soil sitting on limbs harbor animal and plant life that is unknown to science. Humans move through the deep canopy suspended on ropes, far out of sight of the ground, knowing that the price of a small mistake can be a plunge to one’s death. Preston’s account of this amazing world, by turns terrifying, moving, and fascinating, is an adventure story told in novelistic detail by a master of nonfiction narrative. The author shares his protagonists’ passion for tall trees, and he mastered the techniques of tall-tree climbing to tell the story in The Wild Trees—the story of the fate of the world’s most splendid forests and of the imperiled biosphere itself.


The Tree

The Tree

Author: Colin Tudge

Publisher: Crown

Published: 2007-10-23

Total Pages: 482

ISBN-13: 0307395391

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A blend of history, science, philosophy, and environmentalism, The Tree is an engaging and elegant look at the life of the tree and what modern research tells us about their future. There are redwoods in California that were ancient by the time Columbus first landed, and pines still alive that germinated around the time humans invented writing. There are Douglas firs as tall as skyscrapers, and a banyan tree in Calcutta as big as a football field. From the tallest to the smallest, trees inspire wonder in all of us, and in The Tree, Colin Tudge travels around the world—throughout the United States, the Costa Rican rain forest, Panama and Brazil, India, New Zealand, China, and most of Europe—bringing to life stories and facts about the trees around us: how they grow old, how they eat and reproduce, how they talk to one another (and they do), and why they came to exist in the first place. He considers the pitfalls of being tall; the things that trees produce, from nuts and rubber to wood; and even the complicated debt that we as humans owe them. Tudge takes us to the Amazon in flood, when the water is deep enough to submerge the forest entirely and fish feed on fruit while river dolphins race through the canopy. He explains the “memory” of a tree: how those that have been shaken by wind grow thicker and sturdier, while those attacked by pests grow smaller leaves the following year; and reveals how it is that the same trees found in the United States are also native to China (but not Europe). From tiny saplings to centuries-old redwoods and desert palms, from the backyards of the American heartland to the rain forests of the Amazon and the bamboo forests, Colin Tudge takes the reader on a journey through history and illuminates our ever-present but often ignored companions.


Legacy of Luna

Legacy of Luna

Author: Julia Hill

Publisher: Harper Collins

Published: 2010-11-16

Total Pages: 290

ISBN-13: 0062028561

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On December 18, 1999, Julia Butterfly Hill's feet touched the ground for the first time in over two years, as she descended from "Luna," a thousandyear-old redwood in Humboldt County, California. Hill had climbed 180 feet up into the tree high on a mountain on December 10, 1997, for what she thought would be a two- to three-week-long "tree-sit." The action was intended to stop Pacific Lumber, a division of the Maxxam Corporation, from the environmentally destructive process of clear-cutting the ancient redwood and the trees around it. The area immediately next to Luna had already been stripped and, because, as many believed, nothing was left to hold the soil to the mountain, a huge part of the hill had slid into the town of Stafford, wiping out many homes. Over the course of what turned into an historic civil action, Hill endured El Nino storms, helicopter harassment, a ten-day siege by company security guards, and the tremendous sorrow brought about by an old-growth forest's destruction. This story--written while she lived on a tiny platform eighteen stories off the ground--is one that only she can tell. Twenty-five-year-old Julia Butterfly Hill never planned to become what some have called her--the Rosa Parks of the environmental movement. Shenever expected to be honored as one of Good Housekeeping's "Most Admired Women of 1998" and George magazine's "20 Most Interesting Women in Politics," to be featured in People magazine's "25 Most Intriguing People of the Year" issue, or to receive hundreds of letters weekly from young people around the world. Indeed, when she first climbed into Luna, she had no way of knowing the harrowing weather conditions and the attacks on her and her cause. She had no idea of the loneliness she would face or that her feet wouldn't touch ground for more than two years. She couldn't predict the pain of being an eyewitness to the attempted destruction of one of the last ancient redwood forests in the world, nor could she anticipate the immeasurable strength she would gain or the life lessons she would learn from Luna. Although her brave vigil and indomitable spirit have made her a heroine in the eyes of many, Julia's story is a simple, heartening tale of love, conviction, and the profound courage she has summoned to fight for our earth's legacy.


Mischief in the Forest

Mischief in the Forest

Author: Derrick Jensen

Publisher: PM Press

Published: 2010-09-27

Total Pages: 43

ISBN-13: 1604863730

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Grandma Johnson lives alone in the forest and loves to knit sweaters and mittens for her grandchildren in the city. One day, when returning from a visit to the city, her solitude comes to an end when her mischievous forest neighbors reveal themselves in a delightfully colorful fashion. Who took her yarn, and what have they done with it? The colorful mystery is solved when the birds, rabbits, snakes, trees, and other dwellers of Grandma Johnson’s neighborhood are seen playing with the yarn. Suddenly the forest doesn’t seem so lonely, and the visiting grandkids take great delight getting to know the inhabitants of Grandma’s forest. This picture book is a lesson for both young and old to connect with one’s surroundings and embrace the role of good neighbors with the rest of the natural world, whether in the city or in the forest.


Mapping the Terrain of the Heart

Mapping the Terrain of the Heart

Author: Stephen Goldbart

Publisher: Jason Aronson

Published: 1997-03-01

Total Pages: 313

ISBN-13: 1461629489

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If you have read other books about love that have fallen short, read this book. Mapping the Terrain of the Heart is an eloquent guide through love's diverse landscapes that provides a whole new way to think about love relationships. Both descriptive and prescriptive, it is a book for anyone looking to experience a committed relationship full of passion and tenderness. In the labyrinth of love, every one of us has his or her own inner map. Psychologists Goldbart and Wallin lead us along the metaphorical superhighways on the map of love by charting six easily grasped skills—the six capacities of love—that are all necessary to a long-term, stable love relationship: the capacities for erotic involvement, for merging, for idealization, for integration, for "refinding," and for self-transcendence. The authors demonstrate in a very practical, hands-on way how individuals and couples can use these capacities to work on breaking down their usual defenses and grow toward a deeper understanding and connection. In defending ourselves against disappointment in love, we frequently—and often unknowingly—throw up obstacles, create roadblocks, and take detours around these six capacities. We think such detours will take us where we want to go in a relationship, but too often they do not. Goldbart and Wallin's sophisticated but accessible approach—using case studies and practical pointers throughout—based on solid psycho-analytic theory while creating a completely new model for love relationships that also makes intuitive sense. Mapping the Terrain of the Heart offers a comprehensive psychology of love that maps out the paths to a successful relationship and shows how both individuals and couples can progress toward that ever-elusive goal of lasting and passionate love.


Out of Orbit

Out of Orbit

Author: Chris Jones

Publisher: House of Anansi

Published: 2008-05-01

Total Pages: 345

ISBN-13: 1770890734

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In February 2003, American astronauts Donald Pettit and Kenneth Bowersox and Russian flight engineer Nikolai Budarin were on a routine fourteen-week mission maintaining the International Space Station. But then the space shuttle Columbia exploded far beneath them. With the launch program suspended indefinitely, these astronauts had suddenly lost their ride back to earth. Out of Orbit chronicles the efforts of the beleaguered mission controls in Houston and Moscow as they worked frantically against the clock, ultimately settling on a plan that felt, at best, like a long shot. Latched to the side of the space station was a Russian-built Soyuz TMA-1 capsule, the rocket equivalent of a 1976 Gremlin. Despite the inherent danger, the Soyuz became the only hope to return Bowersox, Budarin, and Pettit home. Their harrowing journey back to earth is a powerful reminder that space travel remains an incredibly dangerous pursuit.


American Steel

American Steel

Author: Richard Preston

Publisher: Prentice Hall

Published: 1991

Total Pages: 296

ISBN-13:

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The story of Nucor's billion dollar gamble to build a steel mill in Crawfordsville, Indiana.


Wild Trees

Wild Trees

Author: Richard Preston

Publisher:

Published: 2008-02-01

Total Pages:

ISBN-13: 9781417831968

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From the #1 bestselling author of "The Hot Zone" comes an amazing account of scientific and spiritual passion for the tallest trees in the world, the startling biosystem of the canopy, and those who are committed to the preservation of this astonishing and largely unknown world.