I realise I’ve not actually linked to any of my recent Ecologist reviews, which have taken up the bulk of my reading time over the past couple of months. The one I enjoyed the most was actually a book I’d bought myself – J.A. Baker’s The Peregrine, which I enthused about here. It is, quite simply, an incredible piece of nature writing:
Buried within the poetic language and the seemingly eccentric quest to observe nature is a manifesto. Beneath this quiet observation, this passionate hunt, The Peregrine is a book about connecting with nature on a level that many of us probably would not consider. It teaches us many things, the most important of which is that the natural world will not be understood online, or from a day trip somewhere. We can only scratch the surface in this way.
The other books I’ve reviewed are the No-Nonsense Guide to World Population:
Chapter by chapter, Baird picks up some larger themes. Agriculture in an ageing population, and what that means for us. Women’s control over their own bodies and fertility, and how that is being challenged by religious traditionalists. The way that the rich attempt to control the birth rates of the lower classes – ‘“Stop poor people breeding” has been the mantra of the privileged for some time’.
And finally Water Matters:
It’s not yet summer and already the prospect of drought is on the horizon. It’s only when things get bad and our vulnerability is highlighted – when it is really too late – that concern begins to increase. And issues with water aren’t just a local problem. Far greater ones are faced by communities across the world. So how did we come to be in such a dire situation with respect to water resources, and just how bad are things?