Nature & Travel Book Reviews (page 199)

FALL OF THE PHANTOM LORD by Andrew Todhunter
Released: Aug. 4, 1998

"Classic participant-observer journalism—informed and heady—that brightly illuminates the strange, enthralling world of risk sports."
A thoughtful, elegant portrait of risky business, focusing on rock climber and leaper Dan Osman, and with much startling autobiographical material from Atlantic Monthly contributor Todhunter. Read full book review >
SWALLOW SUMMER by Charles R. Brown
Released: Aug. 1, 1998

"If Brown teaches his university classes with the same relaxed aplomb with which he delivers this study, then he, unlike the swarming cliff swallow, is a rare bird. (photos, not seen)"
Out there in the brute world, Brown (Biology/Univ. of Tulsa), a former curator of ornithology at Yale's Peabody Museum of Natural History, encounters rape and pillage, parasitism and unbridled egotism—just another day in the life of the cliff swallow. Read full book review >

Released: Aug. 1, 1998

"Not just a book on elephants and their surprisingly active verbal lives, but an informed discussion on the policies and future of man and beast in Africa."
In an account that is finally a philosophical and political meditation on wildlife, a biologist studies the long-distance, nearly imperceptible rumblings of elephants and ponders the fate of Africa's elephant herds. Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 1, 1998

"A fascinating meditation on delusion and desire, this is an American tale."
Thomas Pynchon meets Hunter S. Thompson (stylistically) in a novelistic account of the US government's secret air base known as "Area 51." Read full book review >
Released: July 27, 1998

"Her reticence, her unwillingness to reveal herself in spite of the genre she has chosen, leaves leaves this smartly titled work curiously dull."
A collection of essays that combine elements of cultural observation and memoir without fully realizing either. Read full book review >

RIVERS OF THE HEART by Steve Raymond
Released: July 17, 1998

"And it doesn't hurt that he can turn a decent phrase."
Dry, intelligent recollections of a fly-fishing life, from Raymond (Steelhead Country, not reviewed, etc.). Read full book review >
Released: July 15, 1998

"DeBlieu has achieved the Big Two: enlightenment and high entertainment."
Sun heats, Earth spins; there will always be wind somewhere. Read full book review >
Released: July 3, 1998

"Mahoney's heart and soul are in suspension—he loves his primate charges, he kills his primate charges; even his gentling kindness doesn't let him off the hook, and he knows it."
The life story, and heartrending ruminations, of Mahoney, a good veterinarian operating in the suspect terrain of medical research on primates. Read full book review >
Released: July 1, 1998

"Despite the book's ungraceful format, readers will likely be awed by the passion, brio, and honorability of these women. (photos, not seen)"
Reflective, encouraging stories of 17 women who had breast cancer and the challenges they set themselves—including the scaling of Mount Aconcagua—from Gabbard (coauthor of Lou Whittaker: Memoirs of a Mountain Guide, not reviewed). Read full book review >
Released: July 1, 1998

"Powell's overriding notion is undebatable: Chance happenings surely help shape our world, and serendipity—in available tools, say, or disciplinary cross-fertilization—fuels scientific advancement. (photos, not seen)"
"What killed the dinosaurs? At last the great mystery has been solved." Read full book review >
THE CATS OF LAMU by Jack Couffer
Released: June 30, 1998

"His photographs capture with clarity and a sharp eye both the lives of these multicolored felines and the traditional rhythms and details of Lamu's human inhabitants. (100 color and b&w photos)"
A whimsical and surprisingly winning study of the cats indigenous to the Lamu Archipelago, a series of small islands off the coast of Kenya. Read full book review >
REELING IN RUSSIA by Fen Montaigne
Released: June 30, 1998

"The very stuff of footloose travel—strange companions, confounding situations, unexpected moments of fear and eye-popping wonder—told with a journalist's eye for detail. (Author tour)"
A quiet, evocative ramble through the Russian countryside by a former Philadelphia Inquirer Moscow bureau chief, who had made it his quest to fly-fish from the White Sea to Kamchatka and visit every Stalinist labor camp along the way. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Maria Goodavage
October 24, 2016

Wherever the president goes, there will be dogs. They’ll be there no matter what the country or state. They’ll be there regardless of the political climate, the danger level, the weather, or the hour. Maria Goodavage’s new book Secret Service Dogs immerses readers in the heart of this elite world of canine teams who protect first families, popes, and presidential candidates: the selection of dogs and handlers, their year-round training, their missions around the world, and, most important, the bond—the glue that holds the teams together and can mean the difference between finding bombs and terrorists or letting them slip by. Secret Service Dogs celebrates the Secret Service’s most unforgettable canine heroes. It is a must-read for fans of Maria Goodavage, anyone who wants a rare inside view of the United States Secret Service, or just loves dogs. “Goodavage’s subjects and their companions are quirky and dedicated enough to engage readers wondering about those dogs on the White House lawn,” our reviewer writes. View video >