Donna Seaman has produced a list of titles and summaries that focus in some way on sustainability – well work checking out!
- The Conundrum: How Scientific Innovation, Increased Efficiency, and Good Intentions Can Make Our Energy and Climate Problems Worse. By David Owen. Riverhead, paper, $14 (9781594485619). Owen, brisk, funny, and forthright, dispels environmental misperceptions to enable us to proceed toward sustainability on firmer ground.
- Empire of Shadows: The Epic Story of Yellowstone. By George Black. St. Martin’s, $35 (9780312383190). Black’s account of the ordeals and discoveries of nineteenth-century explorers in Yellowstone, and how the region became America’s first national park, is both hair-raising and elucidating.
- Facing the Wave: A Journey in the Wake of the Tsunami. By Gretel Ehrlich. Pantheon, $25 (9780307907318). Ehrlich’s sensitive chronicle of her time in Japan after the devastating March 2011 earthquake and tsunami subtly raises questions about culture, nature, global warming, and nuclear power.
- Full Body Burden: Growing Up in the Nuclear Shadow of Rocky Flats. By Kristen Iversen. Crown, $25 (9780307955630). Iversen grew up in Colorado near Rocky Flats, a criminally mismanaged federal nuclear-weapon factory, and tells the full story of how it poisoned the land and its people.
- Global Weirdness: Severe Storms, Deadly Heat Waves, Relentless Drought, Rising Seas, and the Weather of the Future. By Climate Central. Pantheon, $22.95 (9780307907301). Climate Central, a nonpartisan collective of ecological experts, does a masterful job of clarifying all aspects of climate change, separating indisputable scientific evidence from myth and denial.
- The Land Grabbers: The New Fight over Who Owns the Earth. By Fred Pearce. Beacon, $27.95 (9780807003244). Pearce exposes enormous land grabs by foreigners in Africa, Asia, Indonesia, the Ukraine, and South America, stealthy acquisitions that involve crimes against humanity and environmental destruction.
- On a Farther Shore: The Life and Legacy of Rachel Carson. By William Souder. Crown, $30 (9780307462206). Souder brings a fresh and delving perspective to scientist, writer, and environmentalist Carson’s trailblazing achievements, hard-won artistry, and heroic sacrifices.
- “A Rich Spot of Earth”: Thomas Jefferson’s Revolutionary Garden at Monticello. By Peter J. Hatch. Yale, $35 (9780300171143). Hatch’s elegantly illustrated homage to Jefferson’s horticultural genius establishes the great statesman as the forefather of modern organic and sustainable garden movements.
- Visit Sunny Chernobyl and Other Adventures in the World’s Most Polluted Places. By Andrew Blackwell. Rodale, $25.99 (9781605294452). Blackwell chronicles his visits to “the world’s most polluted places” in this witty yet alarming work of adventurous global environmental investigation.
- When Women Were Birds: Fifty-Four Variations on Voice. By Terry Tempest Williams. Farrar/Sarah Crichton, $24 (9780374288976). Williams reflects on her family’s suffering and revelations as atomic-bomb-test “downwinders” in a transcendent tribute to wilderness and women’s lives, nature and culture, place and sense of self.