Wednesday, June 29, 2011
1) Renner, Swen C. and John H. Rappole (editors). Avifauna of the Eastern Himalayas and Southeastern Sub-Himalayan Mountains: Center of Endemism or Many Species in Marginal Habitats? 2011: Ornithological Monographs No. 70. American Ornithologists' Union. Paperback: 166 pages. Price: $24.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: Any analysis of species distributions in Southeast Asia must confront several difficulties, including weak baseline data, a coarse sampling grid, and confused taxonomy A critical portion of this region, namely the southeastern Himalayas and associated sub-Himalayan areas, are high in species richness and yet are poorly sampled or understood from an ornitho-geographic and conservation perspective. Recent surveys in Assam, Arunachal Pradesh (north-east India), Yunnan (southwest China), and Kachin State (northern Myanmar) have revealed new taxa, confirming the hypothesis that the mountain range is of global conservation importance. In this monograph, we summarize current knowledge, historical and recent collection activities, and taxonomic, systematic, and biogeographic revisions and consider the need for additional work and where in the region that work should be focused.
RECOMMENDATION: For those with an interest in the avifauna of Asia or avian biogeography in general.
Monday, June 27, 2011
The latest Books on Birds catalog from Lynx Edicions is available here:
The file is 80 pages long so it might take some time to download!
1) Castro, Jose I.. The Sharks of North America. 2011. Oxford University Press. Hardbound: 613 Pages. Price: $99.00 U.S.
SUMMARY: Which species of sharks live within 500 nautical miles of North American shores, and what do we know about them? Jose I. Castro's The Sharks of North America is the first comprehensive book in sixty years to address these questions, and it does so with unrivaled authority and aesthetic detail.
The 135 comprehensive species accounts summarize the present knowledge. Each begins with the etymology of a species' common and scientific names, followed by the description, identifying characteristics, geographic range, biology, reproduction, location of nurseries, growth and longevity, and relation to humans. These accounts synthesize decades of research and first-hand examination of sharks collected in fisheries and research operations across the continent. They are thorough, current, and dispel many myths and misunderstandings found in the scientific and popular literature.
Each species is illustrated by one or more original profile figures in color, augmented by images of the snout, upper and lower teeth, and dermal denticles. The stunning color illustrations have been painted directly from freshly dead sharks or Castro's photographs of live or fresh specimens. Their anatomical accuracy and true-to-life coloration are unmatched. The detailed pen and ink drawings of the snout and teeth are crucial aids to species identification, as are the exquisite scanning electron microphotographs of dermal denticles.
The Sharks of North America will serve as the standard reference on sharks for the twenty-first century and is certain to become the primary source of information for anyone interested in sharks, from professional biologists and conservationists to students, informed laypersons, and fishermen. This book features comprehensive accounts of all the North American shark species and anatomically correct colored illustrations of every species.
RECOMMENDATION: A MUST have for anyone with an interest in sharks!
2) Werdelin, Lars and William Joseph Sanders (editors). Cenozoic Mammals of Africa. 2010. University of California Press. Hardbound: 986 pages. Price: $95.00 U.S.
SUMMARY: This magnificent volume is a clear and comprehensive review of the African mammalian fossil record over the past 65 million years. Cenozoic Mammals of Africa includes current taxonomic and systematic revisions of all African mammal taxa, detailed compilations of fossil site occurrences, and a wealth of information regarding paleobiology, phylogeny, and biogeography. Primates, including hominins, are particularly well covered. The discussion addresses the systematics of endemic African mammals, factors relating to species richness, and a summary of isotopic information. The work also provides contextual information about Cenozoic African tectonics, chrono stratigraphy of sites, paleobotany, and global and regional climate change. Updating our understanding of this important material with the wealth of research from the past three decades, this volume is an essential resource for anyone interested in the evolutionary history of Africa and the diversification of its mammals.
RECOMMENDATION: A MUST have book for those with an interest in the fossil mammals of Africa!
Sunday, June 26, 2011
Thursday, June 23, 2011
1) Rogers, Alan R.. The Evidence For Evolution. 2011. University of Chicago Press. Paperback: 120 pages. Price:$18.00 U.S.
SUMMARY: According to polling data, most Americans doubt that evolution is a real phenomenon. And it’s no wonder that so many are skeptical: many of today’s biology courses and textbooks dwell on the mechanisms of evolution—natural selection, genetic drift, and gene flow—but say little about the evidence that evolution happens at all. How do we know that species change? Has there really been enough time for evolution to operate?
With The Evidence for Evolution, Alan R. Rogers provides an elegant, straightforward text that details the evidence for evolution. Rogers covers different levels of evolution, from within-species changes, which are much less challenging to see and believe, to much larger ones, say, from fish to amphibian, or from land mammal to whale. For each case, he supplies numerous lines of evidence to illustrate the changes, including fossils, DNA, and radioactive isotopes. His comprehensive treatment stresses recent advances in knowledge but also recounts the give and take between skeptical scientists who first asked “how can we be sure” and then marshaled scientific evidence to attain certainty. The Evidence for Evolution is a valuable addition to the literature on evolution and will be essential to introductory courses in the life sciences.
RECOMMENDATION: For those wanting a quick overview of evolution.
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
1) Hunt, Terry and Carl Lipo. The Statues That Walked: Unraveling the Mystery of Easter Island. 2011. Free Press. Hardbound: 239 pages. Price: $26.00 U.S.
SUMMARY: The monumental statues of Easter Island, both so magisterial and so forlorn, gazing out in their imposing rows over the island's barren landscape, have been the source of great mystery ever since the island was first discovered by Europeans on Easter Sunday 1722. How could the ancient people who inhabited this tiny speck of land, the most remote in the vast expanse of the Pacific islands, have built such monumental works? No such astonishing numbers of massive statues are found anywhere else in the Pacific. How could the islanders possibly have moved so many multi-ton monoliths from the quarry inland, where they were carved, to their posts along the coastline? And most intriguing and vexing of all, if the island once boasted a culture developed and sophisticated enough to have produced such marvelous edifices, what happened to that culture? Why was the island the Europeans encountered a sparsely populated wasteland?
The prevailing accounts of the island's history tell a story of self-inflicted devastation: a glaring case of eco-suicide. The island was dominated by a powerful chiefdom that promulgated a cult of statue making, exercising a ruthless hold on the island's people and rapaciously destroying the environment, cutting down a lush palm forest that once blanketed the island in order to construct contraptions for moving more and more statues, which grew larger and larger. As the population swelled in order to sustain the statue cult, growing well beyond the island's agricultural capacity, a vicious cycle of warfare broke out between opposing groups, and the culture ultimately suffered a dramatic collapse.
When Terry Hunt and Carl Lipo began carrying out archaeological studies on the island in 2001, they fully expected to find evidence supporting these accounts. Instead, revelation after revelation uncovered a very different truth. In this lively and fascinating account of Hunt and Lipo's definitive solution to the mystery of what really happened on the island, they introduce the striking series of archaeological discoveries they made, and the path-breaking findings of others, which led them to compelling new answers to the most perplexing questions about the history of the island. Far from irresponsible environmental destroyers, they show, the Easter Islanders were remarkably inventive environmental stewards, devising ingenious methods to enhance the island's agricultural capacity. They did not devastate the palm forest, and the culture did not descend into brutal violence. Perhaps most surprising of all, the making and moving of their enormous statutes did not require a bloated population or tax their precious resources; their statue building was actually integral to their ability to achieve a delicate balance of sustainability. The Easter Islanders, it turns out, offer us an impressive record of masterful environmental management rich with lessons for confronting the daunting environmental challenges of our own time.
Shattering the conventional wisdom, Hunt and Lipo's ironclad case for a radically different understanding of the story of this most mysterious place is scientific discovery at its very best. You can read Chapter One here: http://books.simonandschuster.com/Statues-that-Walked/Terry-Hunt/9781439150313/excerpt
RECOMMENDATION: A must read for anyone with an interest in Easter Island!
Sunday, June 19, 2011
Saturday, June 18, 2011
1) Swift, John Resler. Bibliotheca Accipitraria II (The Archives of American Falconry Heritage Publications Series Volume 4). 2011. The Archives of Falconry (The Peregrine Fund). Hardbound: 460 pages. Price: $150.00 U.S.(Subscriber's Edition).
SUMMARY: Bibliotheca Accipitraria II is the first comprehensive updating of James Edmund Harting’s catalog since 1891. It has expanded to 615 individual citations of works published in English from 1486 to 2000 along with references to hundreds of their reprints. Each citation contains a specific bibliographic description along with the author’s anecdotal information about each book’s author and subject matter, publishing history, and significance. This book includes biographies of contributors, a tribute to James Edmund Harting, references, index, a chronological list of titles and eighty illustrations depicting many of the rarest works on falconry. The book concludes with a list of libraries with outstanding holdings of falconry books.
This book is designed to enable present and future falconers and book collectors to distinguish between various editions as well as to identify the rarity and value of each work.
A limited edition of seven hundred copies of this title, all signed and numbered, have been printed: One hundred seventy-five copies in the Patron's Edition, Four hundred eighty-five copies of the Subscriber's Edition, and Forty copies of the Author's Edition.
Both the limited Patron's Edition and the Subscriber's Edition are available from Buteo Books. The Subscriber's Edition is here: http://www.buteobooks.com/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=BBBAO&Product_Code=13376&Category_Code=
and the Patron's Edition here: http://www.buteobooks.com/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=BBBAO&Product_Code=13377
RECOMMENDATION: A MUST have for falconers and book collectors!
1) Donohue, Kathleen (editor). Darwin's Finches: Readings in the Evolution of a Scientific Paradigm. 2011. University of Chicago Press. Paperback: 492 pages. Price: $45.00 U.S.
SUMMARY: In Darwin’s Finches, Kathleen Donohue excerpts and collects the most illuminating and scientifically significant writings on the finches of the Galapagos to teach the fundamental principles of evolutionary theory and to provide a historical record of scientific debate. Beginning with fragments of Darwin’s Galapagos field notes and subsequent correspondence, and moving through the writings of such famed field biologists as David Lack and Peter and Rosemary Grant, the collection demonstrates how scientific processes have changed over time, how different branches of biology relate to one another, and how they all relate to evolution.
As Donohue notes, practicing science today is like entering a conversation that has been in progress for a long, long time. Her book provides the history of that conversation and an invitation to join in. Students of both evolutionary biology and history of science will appreciate this compilation of historical and contemporary readings and will especially value Donohue’s enlightening commentary.
RECOMMENDATION: For those with an interest in Darwin's Finches and/or evolutionary biology.
Thursday, June 16, 2011
1) Rumphius, Georgius Everhardus (with E.M. Beekman). The Ambonese Curiosity Cabinet. 1999. Yale University Press. Hardbound: 567 pages. Price: $70.00 U.S.
SUMMARY: One of the great tropical naturalists of the seventeenth century, G. E. Rumphius-the "Indian Pliny"-spent most of his life stationed on the island of Ambon in eastern Indonesia. His classic text, the first modern work on tropical fauna, is here published in English for the first time. The book describes and illustrates the organisms of the seas surrounding Ambon, as well as minerals and rare concretions taken from animals and plants.
RECOMMENDATION: For those with an interest in the works of Rumphius, early natural history texts and/or Ambon Island. Also of interest is this forthcoming set: The Ambonese Herbal, Volumes 1-6. See here for details: http://yalepress.yale.edu/yupbooks/book.asp?isbn=9780300153767
1) Thompson, Max C. et al. Birds of Kansas. 2011. University Press of Kansas. Hardbound: 528 pages. Price: $39.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: Ever since the Lewis and Clark Expedition spotted its first Wild Turkey in Kansas, the state has celebrated a rich ornithological history—especially in light of its habitat diversity and its location within the Central Migratory Flyway. That birding bounty is now given its due by a respected team of authors, all recognized avian authorities, in a beautifully produced large-format volume highlighted with professional-quality color photographs and maps.
The first such survey in twenty years, this remarkable book depicts every one of the state’s now-documented 473 species. Designed for all knowledgeable birders and professional ornithologists, it provides scientifically accurate information on distribution, breeding, and behavior for each species. It not only significantly updates the previous two-volume field guide Birds in Kansas but also reflects a more than 10% increase in known species—47 more than previously listed, including the Long-billed Murrelet, Ross’s Gull, and Broad-billed Hummingbird.
The contents are arranged by family—from abundant groups like plovers and sandpipers to the lone Magnificent Frigatebird (Fregata magnificens) recorded in the state. For each species, a map shows the counties in which it has been reported, and many species include maps for both breeding and banding. Use of color in the distribution maps allows depiction of seasonal bird distribution. The text also includes a brief life history for most regularly breeding species, as well as information on migratory routes explaining where the birds travel when they leave Kansas.
Birds of Kansas will be a vital addition to the library of anyone who seeks a better understanding of the diverse and ever-fascinating Kansas avifauna.
RECOMMENDATION: A must have for those with an interest in the birds of Kansas! Birders from surrounding states will find it useful too.
1) Kerst, Cary and Steve Gordon. Dragonflies and Damselflies of Oregon: A Field Guide. 2011. OSU Press. Paperback: 304 pages. Price: $24.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: Growing interest in watching and identifying dragonflies and damselflies has sharpened the need for an authoritative resource like Dragonflies and Damselflies of Oregon, a definitive field guide devoted solely to dragonflies and damselflies found in the state.
Cary Kerst and Steve Gordon include information on identification, as well as biology and behavior, using common terms useful to the novice and experienced enthusiast alike. The book features stunning color photographs of male and female of all species currently known in Oregon, along with helpful illustrations and charts with important identification characteristics.
Dragonflies and Damselflies of Oregon presents the life cycle and larval habits of dragonflies and damselflies, along with photographs of the larvae of families. The Oregon range for each species is mapped, and the size range of adults is provided in text and illustration. The book also includes a description of the best sites in Oregon to observe these amazing insects, a useful tool for viewing uncommon species in spectacular settings.
Dragonflies and Damselflies of Oregon is an essential reference for Odonatists, entomologists, birders, butterfly watchers, fishermen, wetland experts, naturalists, gardeners, artists, photographers, and all outdoor enthusiasts. Included in this book are:
* 91 species descriptions, with ID charts
*Full-color photographs of all species known in Oregon, with illustrations and charts
*Description of 30 best locations in Oregon to observe dragonflies
*Tables of illustrations used as pictorial keys
*Useful appendices and index
RECOMMENDATION: A must have for anyone with an interest in the Odonata of Oregon!
2) Davis, Kate, Rob Palmer and Nick Dunlop. Raptors of the West: Captured in Photographs. 2011. Mountain Press. Paperback: 242 pages. Price: $30.00 U.S.
SUMMARY: With their striking looks, keen vision, and hunting prowess, the birds of prey—eagles, hawks, falcons, and owls—have long captured the human imagination. Now Raptors of the West, a collection of some of most remarkable and action-packed raptor photographs ever taken, can inspire your own imagination to take flight. This book, the latest collaboration by award-winning photographers Rob Palmer and Nick Dunlop and author/ photographer Kate Davis, is a glorious photographic ode to the forty-four birds of prey that roam the skies of the American West.
Instead of grouping the birds by type—owls with owls, hawks with hawks—the book has chapters arranged by the habitat type and region where each bird spends the breeding season. Whether you’re enjoying these pages from the comfort of your own armchair or taking a trip to the field you can see which birds to look for in that area—Swainson’s Hawks soar over grasslands next to Prairie Falcons while Cooper’s Hawks share mature forests with Flammulated Owls. While the 400-plus stunning color photographs are enough to set this book apart on their own, Davis’s informative and entertaining text completes the picture.
RECOMMENDATION: Raptor people should enjoy the photography in this coffee-table book.
3) Garrido, Orlando and Arturo Kirkconnell. Aves de Cuba: Field Guide to the Birds of Cuba, Spanish-language Edition. 2011. Cornell University Press. Paperback: 287 pages. Price: $35.00 U.S.
SUMMARY: Cuba is the largest island in the Caribbean, and its large number of endemic bird species makes it an interesting and increasingly popular destination for birders as tourism expands. This Spanish-language edition of the groundbreaking Field Guide to the Birds of Cuba provides all Spanish-speaking visitors to the country and its citizens with an illustrated field guide to the more than 369 bird species of this island nation for the first time. The guide—with its fifty-one color plates, current distribution maps, and comprehensive species descriptions—includes species that are island residents, migrants, and rarities, as well as twenty-six endemics such as the Bee Hummingbird and Cuban Green Woodpecker that can be seen nowhere else. The information provided by the Cuban author team will allow for easy identification of all of Cuba’s birds as well as a greater appreciation of the geography and natural history of this unique island country.
RECOMMENDATION: A must have for Spanish speaking people interested in the birds of Cuba! Also available:
4) Muller-Schwarze, Dietland. The Beaver: Its Life and Impact (second edition). 2011. Cornell University Press. Hardbound: 216 pages. Price: $39.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: Beavers can and do dramatically change the landscape. The beaver is a keystone species—their skills as foresters and engineers create and maintain ponds and wetlands that increase biodiversity, purify water, and prevent large-scale flooding. Biologists have long studied their daily and seasonal routines, family structures, and dispersal patterns. As human development encroaches into formerly wild areas, property owners and government authorities need new, nonlethal strategies for dealing with so-called nuisance beavers. At the same time, the complex behavior of beavers intrigues visitors at parks and other wildlife viewing sites because it is relatively easy to observe.
In an up-to-date, exhaustively illustrated, and comprehensive book on beaver biology and management, Dietland Müller-Schwarze gathers a wealth of scientific knowledge about both the North American and Eurasian beaver species. The Beaver is designed to satisfy the curiosity and answer the questions of anyone with an interest in these animals, from students who enjoy watching beaver ponds at nature centers to homeowners who hope to protect their landscaping. Photographs taken by the authors document every aspect of beaver behavior and biology, the variety of their constructions, and the habitats that depend on their presence.
RECOMMENDATION: A must have for those with an interest in beavers.
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
SUMMARY: Over the past several decades, Richard Ellis has produced a remarkable body of work that has been called “magnificent” (Washington Post Book World), “masterful” (Scientific American), “magical” (Men’s Journal), and a “dazzling tour de force” (Christian Science Monitor). Ellis’s new book—a fascinating tour through the world of the sperm whale—will surely inspire more such praise for the author heralded by Publishers Weekly as “America’s foremost writer on marine research.”
Written with Ellis’s deep knowledge and trademark passion, verve, and wit—and illustrated with a wide array of images including his own signature artwork—his study covers the full spectrum of the sperm whale’s existence from its prehistoric past to its current endangered existence. Ellis, as no one else can, illuminates the iconic impact of Physeter macrocephalus (“big-headed blower”) on our history, environment, and culture, with a substantial nod to Herman Melville and Moby-Dick, the great novel that put the sperm whale (and whaling) on the literary map.
Ranging far and wide, Ellis covers the sperm whale’s evolution, ecology, biology, anatomy, behavior, social organization, intelligence, communications, migrations, diet, and breeding. He also devotes considerable space to the whale’s hunting prowess, including its clashes with the giant squid, and to the history of the whaling industry that decimated its numbers during the last two centuries. He even includes a story about a beached juvenile he helped rescue, an event that provided scientists with one of their first opportunities to observe a sperm whale in the water and up close.
Offering a rich tapestry for anyone with an interest in the marvels of ocean life, Ellis’s book provides an indispensable guide to the life and times of one of the planet’s most intelligent, elusive, and endangered species.
RECOMMENDATION: The author's artworks highlight this book! A must read for anyone interested in Sperm Whales or whales in general.
Monday, June 13, 2011
1) Hanson, Thor. Feathers: The Evolution of a Natural Miracle. 2011. Basic Books. Hardbound: 336 pages. Price: $25.99 U.S.
SUMMARY: 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? Engineers call feathers the most efficient insulating material ever discovered, and they are at the root of biology's most enduring debate. They silence the flight of owls and keep penguins dry below the ice. They have decorated queens, jesters, and priests. And they have inked documents from the Constitution to the novels of Jane Austen. Feathers is a captivating and beautiful exploration of this most enchanting object.
RECOMMENDATION: A good overview on the subject.
Sunday, June 12, 2011
Saturday, June 11, 2011
1) Balcombe, Jonathan. The Exultant Ark: A Pictorial Tour of Animal Pleasure. 2011. University of California Press. Hardbound: 214 pages. Price: $34.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: Nature documentaries often depict animal life as a grim struggle for survival, but this visually stunning book opens our eyes to a different, more scientifically up-to-date way of looking at the animal kingdom. In more than one hundred thirty striking images, The Exultant Ark celebrates the full range of animal experience with dramatic portraits of animal pleasure ranging from the charismatic and familiar to the obscure and bizarre. These photographs, windows onto the inner lives of pleasure seekers, show two polar bears engaged in a bout of wrestling, hoary marmots taking time for a friendly chase, Japanese macaques enjoying a soak in a hot spring, a young bull elk sticking out his tongue to catch snowflakes, and many other rewarding moments. Biologist and best-selling author Jonathan Balcombe is our guide, interpreting the images within the scientific context of what is known about animal behavior. In the end, old attitudes fall away as we gain a heightened sense of animal individuality and of the pleasures that make life worth living for all sentient beings.
RECOMMENDATION: For those with a general interest in animal behavior.
Friday, June 10, 2011
I've just added a new link to my Other Book Links column on the left hand side: The Peregrine Fund Research Library: Books For Sale. It's a good source for used books and journal publications.
Also, Buteo Books has just got in their stock of the 2nd edition of Birds of Trinidad and Tobago. See here:
Also, Buteo Books has just got in their stock of the 2nd edition of Birds of Trinidad and Tobago. See here:
Wednesday, June 8, 2011
1) Robbins, Martha M. and Christophe Boesch (editors). Among African Apes: Stories and Photos from the Field. 2011. University of California Press. Hardbound: 182 pages. Price: $29.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: These compelling stories and photographs take us to places like Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda, Ivindo National Park in Gabon, and the Taï National Park in Côte d’Ivoire for an intimate and revealing look at the lives of African wild apes—and at the lives of the humans who study them. In tales of adventure, research, and conservation, veteran field researchers and conservationists describe exciting discoveries made over the past few decades about chimpanzees, bonobos, and gorillas. The book features vivid descriptions of interactions among these highly intelligent creatures as they hunt, socialize, and play. More difficult themes emerge as well, including the threats apes face from poaching, disease, and deforestation. In stories that are often moving and highly personal, this book takes measure of how special the great apes are and discusses positive conservation efforts, including ecotourism, that can help bring these magnificent animals back from the brink of extinction.
RECOMMENDATION: For those with an interest in the great apes.
Tuesday, June 7, 2011
This week Princeton University Press is giving away a copy of Avian Architecture. For details see here:
Saturday, June 4, 2011
1) Kenefick, Martyn, Robin Restall and Floyd Hayes. Birds of Trinidad & Tobago. 2011. Helm. Paperback: 272 pages. Price: GBP 24.99 (about $41.05 U.S.).
SUMMARY: Trinidad & Tobago are popular tourist destinations and the islands are also a top location for visiting birders. This comprehensive and portable field guide covers every species found on the islands. The concise text includes descriptions of every species, highlighting plumage variation and distinctions from similar species. The plates use the relevant images from Birds of Northern South America to create new plates specific for Trinidad & Tobago.
This new edition has been completely revised. The plates have been extensively re-worked, with many images replaced and repainted. As a result, there are now eight extra plates, and some groups, such as flycatchers, have been repainted almost in entirety. The text has also been updated.
This new edition supersedes all previous field guides to these popular islands.
RECOMMENDATION: The page count has increased from 256 to 272 pages. A must have for birders interested in these islands, even if you own the first edition! This edition WON'T be co-published here in North America.
Friday, June 3, 2011
1) Foster, Thomas C.. Twenty-Five Books That Shaped America: How White Whales, Green Lights, and Restless Spirits Forged Our National Identity. 2011. Harper. Paperback: 323 pages. Price: $14.99 U.S.
SUMMARY: From the author of the New York Times bestselling How to Read Literature Like a Professor comes a highly entertaining and informative new book on the twenty-five works of literature that have most shaped the American character. Foster applies his much-loved combination of wit, know-how, and analysis to explain how each work has shaped our very existence as readers, students, teachers, and Americans.
Foster illuminates how books such as The Last of the Mohicans, Moby-Dick, My Ántonia, The Great Gatsby, The Maltese Falcon, Their Eyes Were Watching God, On the Road, The Crying of Lot 49, and others captured an American moment, how they influenced our perception of nationhood and citizenship, and what about them endures in the American character. Twenty-five Books That Shaped America is a fun and enriching guide to America through its literature.
RECOMMENDATION: Take a look at this book and see if you agree with the author's choices.