Nature & Travel Book Reviews (page 205)

Released: Aug. 1, 1993

"No one could convey the potential tragedy of this statement more convincingly than this author, who has done something to remedy it."
In a captivating plea for more effective management of the rain forest's botanical, medicinal, and cultural resources, the chief ethnobotanist at Conservation International vividly recalls his apprenticeships to the tribal shamanic healers of the northeast Amazon. ``There exists no shortage of `wonder drugs' waiting to be found in the rain forests,'' says Plotkin, yet ``we know little or nothing about the chemical composition of 98.6% of the Brazilian flora''—and this despite the fact that, even now, the value of medicines derived from tropical plants is more than $6 billion a year. Read full book review >
BLOODTIES by Ted Kerasote
Released: Aug. 1, 1993

"A winning hand of up-to-date cards in the deadly serious hunting game."
A potent exploration of the gray line between ``sport'' and subsistence hunting. Read full book review >

Released: July 28, 1993

"A suspenseful confrontation between a roaring inferno and an elephantine bureaucracy, in which everyone gets burned."
With one eye cocked for high drama, the other for any hint of bureaucratic bungling, Morrison (a reporter for Insight magazine) tells in fascinating detail the story of Yellowstone's 1988 firestorm. Read full book review >
Released: July 19, 1993

"Science presented with enthusiasm—entertaining and enlightening. (Eight pages of color photographs—not seen)"
A lively introduction to research on avian intelligence that builds to a passionate cry for a revolution in human thought. Read full book review >
Released: July 19, 1993

"Ultimately less than the sum of its parts—but, still, a well-written and evocative account of a remarkable community of strong individuals faced with powerful external forces. (Twelve- page photo insert—not seen)"
Jiler (Wild Berry Moon, 1982) brings a novelist's approach to this ``true account'' of the impact of Hurricane Gloria on Fire Island in 1985—blending history, meteorology, and vivid character portraits to convey a sense not just of a natural disaster but of a unique setting (socially as well as geographically) in which the larger events took place. Read full book review >

Released: July 16, 1993

"A wealth of current ecological thinking that will prove a gold mine to those behind in their reading, with enough new material to keep the well-versed interested."
DiSilvestro (Living with the Reptiles, 1990, etc.) draws on a number of cutting-edge ecotheories to fashion this strong critique of our nation's pitiful handling of its wild areas. Read full book review >
ALONE by Gerard d'Aboville
Released: July 11, 1993

"Not up to its namesake (Richard Byrd's classic tale of Antarctic survival) but, still, a memorable tale of salt-drenched fortitude. (Sixteen pages of color photos—not seen)"
D'Aboville, who rowed across the Atlantic in 1980, proves that the age of adventure is still upon us—as he now rows across the Pacific in a 26-foot craft, ``alone, alone, alone.'' Skip the first third of the text, which is filler: d'Aboville deciding on his mission, rounding up sponsors, working the press. Read full book review >
Released: July 1, 1993

"Could achieve a cult following. (Twenty-seven lithographs by Davis Teselle) (First serial to New Age Journal)"
Twenty-seven lyrical, beautifully illustrated essays about communing with trees. Read full book review >
Released: July 1, 1993

"The ICF story is wooden—but the cranes dance. (Color & b&w photographs—not seen)"
An uneven history of the International Crane Foundation (ICF) and its efforts to save the world's cranes, by biologist/writer Katz (Bird Watcher's Digest, etc.—not reviewed). Read full book review >
Released: June 28, 1993

"Much wittier than most cryptozoological reports (which veer toward stuffiness to counterbalance the jeers)—and a spanking good travelogue to boot. (Photos—not seen)"
Nugent (The Search for the Pink-Headed Duck, 1991—not reviewed), a specialist in cryptozoological adventures—combing the far regions of the earth for undiscovered beasties—takes on Mokele-Mbembe, a brontosaurus-like dinosaur reported to dwell in the rain forests of central Africa. Read full book review >
Released: June 15, 1993

"Well informed, if long-winded, and adept at revealing the human faces behind the issues, with genuine sympathy for those hurt by the decline of Oregon's timber industry."
A moving account of personalities and politics in the on-going battle over logging the last areas of old-growth forest in the heart of Oregon's Cascade Range, from Time reporter Seideman (The New Republic, 1986—not reviewed). Read full book review >
Released: June 11, 1993

"Photographs—not seen)."
A pleasurable ride with aviatrix Gosnell on her leisurely summer odyssey, flying in to out-of-the-way airfields and seeing the US from a fresh perspective. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Fatima Bhutto
April 14, 2015

Set during the American invasion of Afghanistan, Fatima Bhutto’s debut novel The Shadow of the Crescent Moon begins and ends one rain-swept Friday morning in Mir Ali, a small town in Pakistan’s Tribal Areas close to the Afghan border. Three brothers meet for breakfast. Soon after, the eldest, Aman Erum, recently returned from America, hails a taxi to the local mosque. Sikandar, a doctor, drives to the hospital where he works, but must first stop to collect his troubled wife, who has not joined the family that morning. No one knows where Mina goes these days. But when, later in the morning, the two are taken hostage by members of the Taliban, Mina will prove to be stronger than anyone could have imagined. Our reviewer writes that The Shadow of the Crescent Moon is “a timely, earnest portrait of a family torn apart by the machinations of other people’s war games and desperately trying to survive.” View video >