THE ENVIRONMENTAL MOVEMENT

FROM ITS ROOTS TO THE CHALLENGES OF A NEW CENTURY

Laurence Pringle (Bats, 2000, etc.) has assembled a superior overview of the environmental movement from its inception to the present. He begins with North America's first folly, when the settlers arrived, facing a brutal, merciless land that seemed inexhaustibly abundant. Pringle leads us through the first steps of the environmental movement, when few realized the abundance was far from inexhaustible. He describes the onset of the naturalists and the conservationists who were lead by the likes of John Muir and put into political practice by Theodore Roosevelt. Pringle highlights the foremost individuals of the movement and includes illustrative photographs. Pringle never shies from being blunt about the treachery of some political leaders or corporations, but neither does he paint a portrait too heavily weighted on one side, rather offering a fine journalistic balance of facts without histrionics or pedantry. The book is so engrossing and even uplifting that when it finally arrives at the nineties it is a sad declaration that despite all that has been achieved, the planet and its creatures still face incredible peril in many forms. Written with clarity and resonance, this leaves the reader with a sense of progress as well as urgency for further change. (lists of ecosystem services, environmental and government agencies, further reading, index, not seen) (Nonfiction. 10-12)

Pub Date: March 31, 2000

ISBN: 0-688-15626-6

Page Count: 144

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2000

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THE PUMPKIN BOOK

The Pumpkin Book (32 pp.; $16.95; Sept. 15; 0-8234-1465-5): From seed to vine and blossom to table, Gibbons traces the growth cycle of everyone’s favorite autumn symbol—the pumpkin. Meticulous drawings detail the transformation of tiny seeds to the colorful gourds that appear at roadside stands and stores in the fall. Directions for planting a pumpkin patch, carving a jack-o’-lantern, and drying the seeds give young gardeners the instructions they need to grow and enjoy their own golden globes. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 15, 1999

ISBN: 0-8234-1465-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1999

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WEATHER

Remarking that ``nothing about the weather is very simple,'' Simon goes on to describe how the sun, atmosphere, earth's rotation, ground cover, altitude, pollution, and other factors influence it; briefly, he also tells how weather balloons gather information. Even for this outstanding author, it's a tough, complex topic, and he's not entirely successful in simplifying it; moreover, the import of the striking uncaptioned color photos here isn't always clear. One passage—``Cumulus clouds sometimes build up into towering masses called cumulus congestus, or swelling cumulus, which may turn into cumulonimbus clouds''—is superimposed on a blue-gray, cloud-covered landscape. But which kind of clouds are these? Another photo, in blue-black and white, shows what might be precipitation in the upper atmosphere, or rain falling on a darkened landscape, or...? Generally competent and certainly attractive, but not Simon's best. (Nonfiction. 10-12)

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 1993

ISBN: 0-688-10546-7

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Morrow/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1993

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