A rich, compelling look at a thriving yet increasingly threatened natural resource and those who depend on it.

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THE SALMON WAY

AN ALASKA STATE OF MIND

A writer and photographer offers a thoughtful exploration of the vital role played by salmon in Alaskan communities.

Gulick (Salmon in the Trees, 2010), whose work has appeared in Audubon and National Wildlife, follows up her preceding book with this well-reported and gorgeously illustrated volume about the intimate, complex relationship between salmon and the Alaskan people. Salmon is a gift, the author explains, and those who receive it all share a “deep connection to these remarkable fish,” though they may sometimes disagree on the best way to use and protect the prize they’ve been given. Alaska is one of the few places that still has a flourishing population of wild salmon, Gulick asserts before interviewing people whose very existence depends on the continued health of salmon runs. Some are transplants who run the sport-fishing businesses that attract tourists to America’s last frontier; others are commercial fishermen; and several are Alaska Natives who keep centuries-old traditions alive when they catch and preserve the flavorful fish. The author provides an up-close look at “the salmon way” as she ventures out on a fishing boat, travels by seaplane into the wilderness, encounters bears, and sits down for many meals as she gets to know “the salmon people of Alaska.” The result is a vivid portrait of a place that will likely be foreign to many readers; 18% of the population still harvests fish, game, and plants in order to survive. Those who embrace a subsistence way of life (either by choice or necessity) might seem poor to outsiders, but they “consider themselves the richest people in the world,” with access to the vast variety of nature’s bounty, as Gulick explains. Her conversations with those who depend on salmon deftly show how the fish are a vital link in the state’s environmental and economic systems but also how they bind families and communities together. Few who read this illuminating book or see the author’s awe-inspiring color photographs will fail to come away with a sense that this is a way of life well worth preserving.

A rich, compelling look at a thriving yet increasingly threatened natural resource and those who depend on it.

Pub Date: May 1, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-68051-238-0

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Braided River

Review Posted Online: April 11, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2019

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A tiny book, not much bigger than a pamphlet, with huge potential impact.

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NO ONE IS TOO SMALL TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE

A collection of articulate, forceful speeches made from September 2018 to September 2019 by the Swedish climate activist who was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.

Speaking in such venues as the European and British Parliaments, the French National Assembly, the Austrian World Summit, and the U.N. General Assembly, Thunberg has always been refreshingly—and necessarily—blunt in her demands for action from world leaders who refuse to address climate change. With clarity and unbridled passion, she presents her message that climate change is an emergency that must be addressed immediately, and she fills her speeches with punchy sound bites delivered in her characteristic pull-no-punches style: “I don’t want you to be hopeful. I want you to panic. I want you to feel the fear I feel every day. And then I want you to act.” In speech after speech, to persuade her listeners, she cites uncomfortable, even alarming statistics about global temperature rise and carbon dioxide emissions. Although this inevitably makes the text rather repetitive, the repetition itself has an impact, driving home her point so that no one can fail to understand its importance. Thunberg varies her style for different audiences. Sometimes it is the rousing “our house is on fire” approach; other times she speaks more quietly about herself and her hopes and her dreams. When addressing the U.S. Congress, she knowingly calls to mind the words and deeds of Martin Luther King Jr. and John F. Kennedy. The last speech in the book ends on a note that is both challenging and upbeat: “We are the change and change is coming.” The edition published in Britain earlier this year contained 11 speeches; this updated edition has 16, all worth reading.

A tiny book, not much bigger than a pamphlet, with huge potential impact.

Pub Date: Nov. 26, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-14-313356-8

Page Count: 112

Publisher: Penguin

Review Posted Online: Nov. 3, 2019

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A wondrous mix of races, ages, genders, and social classes, and on virtually every page is a surprise.

HUMANS OF NEW YORK

STORIES

Photographer and author Stanton returns with a companion volume to Humans of New York (2013), this one with similarly affecting photographs of New Yorkers but also with some tales from his subjects’ mouths.

Readers of the first volume—and followers of the related site on Facebook and elsewhere—will feel immediately at home. The author has continued to photograph the human zoo: folks out in the streets and in the parks, in moods ranging from parade-happy to deep despair. He includes one running feature—“Today in Microfashion,” which shows images of little children dressed up in various arresting ways. He also provides some juxtapositions, images and/or stories that are related somehow. These range from surprising to forced to barely tolerable. One shows a man with a cat on his head and a woman with a large flowered headpiece, another a construction worker proud of his body and, on the facing page, a man in a wheelchair. The emotions course along the entire continuum of human passion: love, broken love, elation, depression, playfulness, argumentativeness, madness, arrogance, humility, pride, frustration, and confusion. We see varieties of the human costume, as well, from formalwear to homeless-wear. A few celebrities appear, President Barack Obama among them. The “stories” range from single-sentence comments and quips and complaints to more lengthy tales (none longer than a couple of pages). People talk about abusive parents, exes, struggles to succeed, addiction and recovery, dramatic failures, and lifelong happiness. Some deliver minirants (a neuroscientist is especially curmudgeonly), and the children often provide the most (often unintended) humor. One little boy with a fishing pole talks about a monster fish. Toward the end, the images seem to lead us toward hope. But then…a final photograph turns the light out once again.

A wondrous mix of races, ages, genders, and social classes, and on virtually every page is a surprise.

Pub Date: Oct. 13, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-250-05890-4

Page Count: 432

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: July 28, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2015

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