How can we understand the world of the atom or the size of our galaxy? How do we grasp a billionth of a second or a billion years; the freezing point of helium or the heat generated by the blast of an atomic bomb? Spectrums answers these questions and many more by exploring realms we are familiar with in our daily lives, but whose extremes boggle the mind and inspire a sense of wonder.
“[A] fine book…. Mr. Hanson’s pleasure in feathers is infectious…. [Feathers] is gracious, funny, persuasive and wide ranging. Feathers, Mr. Hanson reminds us, teach a remarkable amount about evolution, insulation, engineering, archaeology and fashion. Better still, as this book shows, they allow not only birds but the human imagination to take flight.” - New York Times
Feathers are an evolutionary marvel: aerodynamic, insulating, beguiling. They date back more than 100 million years. Yet their story has never been fully told. In Feathers, biologist Thor Hanson details a sweeping natural history, as feathers have been used to fly, protect, attract, and adorn through time and place. Applying the research of paleontologists, ornithologists, biologists, engineers, and even art historians, Hanson asks: What are feathers? How did they evolve? What do they mean to us?
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In 1992 landmark federal legislation called for the removal of two dams from the Elwha River to restore salmon runs. Jeff Crane dives into the debate over development and ecological preservation in Finding the River, presenting a long-term environmental and human history of the river as well as a unique look at river reconstruction.
Finding the River examines the ways that different communities--from the Lower Elwha Klallam Indians to current-day residents--have used the river and its resources, giving close attention to the harnessing of the Elwha for hydroelectric production and the resulting decline of its fisheries.
"Never have I read such a beautiful book with such a dull premise: what it’s like to plant tree seedlings in the wake of logging companies’ destruction. ...Gill turns a subject that might seem narrow and confined into a lyrical essay about labor and rest, decay and growth"—Smithsonian Magazine
• Winner of the BC National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction
• Shortlisted for the Hilary Weston Prize
• Shortlisted for the Charles Taylor Non-Fiction Award
During Charlotte Gill’s 20 years working as a tree planter she encountered hundreds of clear-cuts, each one a collision site between human civilization and the natural world, a complicated landscape presenting geographic evidence of our appetites. Charged with sowing the new forest in these clear-cuts, tree planters are a tribe caught between the stumps and the virgin timber, between environmentalists and loggers.