Staff Picks by Tag

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Slow Birding: The Art and Science of Enjoying the Birds in Your Own Backyard  By Joan E. Strassmann Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593329924
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: TarcherPerigee - October 25th, 2022

Perfect book for those who are curious about the birdwatching world. Birdwatching as a hobby entails patience and time, waiting for the sounds of rustling leaves and whisper songs. And though it’s already a mindful hobby, Joan argues that we can be slower when it comes to observing birds, either from your backyard or walking in your neighborhood. She dedicates a chapter per bird, giving us insight and information from the bird expert themselves. Then comes the ‘slow birding’ itself, with reflection questions and activities to hone in on your observational skills when watching birds and how they behave. It’s been my favorite companion while I birdwatch from my balcony or at my local park.

Review by Javi

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Dinosaurs: A Novel By Lydia Millet Cover Image
ISBN: 9781324021469
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - October 11th, 2022

What a wonderful novel. After a bad break up, lonely, heartbroken, middle-aged Gil moves to Arizona to begin again. His new neighbors live in a glass walled house and Gil studies them as he studies the local flora and fauna, eventually becoming much more than a mere spectator. In this look and ordinary life, Millet somehow delivers a novel that is at once foreboding and comforting. 

And Gil. Gil will restore your faith (or at least begin to) in humanity and maybe even straight, white men. 

In a word, captivating.

Review by Erin

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The Golden Spruce: A True Story of Myth, Madness, and Greed By John Vaillant Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393328646
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - May 17th, 2006

This book is a must read for your Pacific Northwest history shelf. Its an amazing and complex adventure story that dives deep into the hidden histories of logging and its disruptive intersection with indigenous cultures in our region. 

I've been a huge fan of this authors The Tiger for some time and am so glad I finally made time for this incredible book.  

Review by Robert

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Timefulness: How Thinking Like a Geologist Can Help Save the World By Marcia Bjornerud Cover Image
ISBN: 9780691202631
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Princeton University Press - February 11th, 2020

Timefulness includes a feeling for distances and proximities in the geography of deep time. Focusing simply on the age of the Earth is like describing a symphony in terms of its total measure count. Without time, a symphony is a heap of sounds; the duration of notes and re-occurrence of themes gives it shape. Similarly, the grandeur of Earth’s story lies in the gradually unfolding, interwoven, rhythms of its many movements, with short motifs scampering over tones that resonate across the entire span of the planet’s history.' (Marcia Bjornerud)

This is the book that solidified my obsessive interest in geology. Marcia Bjornerud's book is a gift to the amateur, a blessing for anyone in the philosophical and scientific study of our 4.6 billion year old planet. Existential, accessible, and framed within deep time and climate change, this book changed my life and opened my days to a new preoccupation (rocks).

Review by Spencer R.

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The High Sierra: A Love Story By Kim Stanley Robinson Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316593014
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Little, Brown and Company - May 10th, 2022

Science fiction writer Kim Stanley Robinson calls his time in the mountains 'hours stolen from the gods.' For me, this book was a touchstone for what I suspect will be a lifetime's interest in geology. Robinson turns out to be an enthusiastic amateur-expert on psychogeology, alpenglow, and traversing tallus and scree. A gold mine for any hiker, mountaineer, or reader of John Muir or Gary Snyder—and if you're at the intersection of any of those things, this book is a no-brainer. Buy in hardcover. Appreciate the stunning color photographs.

Review by Spencer R.

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Aerial Geology: A High-Altitude Tour of North America’s Spectacular Volcanoes, Canyons, Glaciers, Lakes, Craters, and Peaks By Mary Caperton Morton Cover Image
ISBN: 9781604697629
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Timber Press - October 4th, 2017

This deceptive, beautiful tome is a captivating Geology 101 course disguised as a coffee table decoration. Stalwart PNW highlights include: the Olympic Peninsula, the Columbia River Gorge, Mt. Saint Helens, Crater Lake, and Hells Canyon (where my grandmother famously developed pancreatitis in the middle of a rafting trip).


Review by Spencer R.

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A World on the Wing: The Global Odyssey of Migratory Birds By Scott Weidensaul Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393882414
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - March 15th, 2022

It's been over 20 years since Weidensaul's previous work on migration,and it's hard to think much more can be added. Well, he does, and he does it in that evocative and immersive way that us bird lovers know Weidensaul for. The past two decades of technology have deepened our understanding of migration and, even moreso, how our species' impact on the planet puts the avian world in peril.

Review by Zack

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Grow: A Family Guide to Plants and How to Grow Them By Riz Reyes, Sara Boccaccini Meadows (Illustrator) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781419756658
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Magic Cat - March 1st, 2022

This beautiful book is full of cool and useful information about some of our favorite fruits, herbs, veggies, fungi, and flowers! Whether you want to grow your own kale or learn about the history of the pineapple, this is the book for you. 

Review by Alyson

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His Name was Death By Rafael Bernal, Kit Schluter (Translated by) Cover Image
By Rafael Bernal, Kit Schluter (Translated by)
ISBN: 9780811230834
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: New Directions - November 16th, 2021

An alcoholic hermit discovers the truth of power in the world: the flies are actually in control. Bizarre, thrilling, and fast paced, this newly translated novel is worth a read.

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Feral Creatures By Kira Jane Buxton Cover Image
ISBN: 9781538735244
Availability: Out of stock, usually available in 3-10 days
Published: Grand Central Publishing - August 24th, 2021

Feral Creatures--a stupendous sophomore novel for Buxton, and a more sentimental sequel to my favorite adventure story of 2019-- cannot be missed! It's a colorful education in climate change, ecology, and zoology; a tender acknowledgement of the unavoidable  "dark tides" we all sink into--especially during disastrous times; a genuine display of the hopeful, hilarious, and often fearful process of building a family; a true odyssey.  

Oh, and there are  *chilling*  new animal/human/zombie hybrids to war against your favorite profane crow, a wild child, and their quirky cast of again I say YOU DON'T WANT TO MISS THIS!! 


Review by Katelynn