83 Comments
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

Not sure if this is technically a nature book, but Animal, Vegetable, Miracle (Barbara Kingsolver) was very good. Another book which takes place in nature - and is a crazy true story - is The Stranger in the Woods (Michael Finley). It’s a very quick and fascinating read!

Expand full comment
author

Awesome, Kingsolver (all of her work) is high on my list for '24!

Expand full comment

Barbara Kingsolver’s work is so informed by nature, due to where she grew-up and resides.

Expand full comment

Loved AVM!

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

Two that I am very fond of:

The Outermost House by Henry Beston.

Blue Highways by William Least Heat Moon

And then anything by Wendell Berry - fiction, non-fiction, or poetry.

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

The Outermost House! I haven't thought of that book in a while.....

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

When my sons were 18 and 21, they took a 10-week 16,000 mile loop around the country, camping and visiting national parks. I lived vicariously through their photos while reading Blue Highways and of course Travels with Charley (which actually inspired their trip.) Also a huge Wendell Berry fan (especially as the younger one works on sustainable farms.) Adding the Beston to my list!

Expand full comment
author

Been way too long since I've read Wendell Berry.

And I've not heard of The Outermost House. Thx!

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

Desert Solitaire by Ed Abbey. Like Thoreau with the crankiness turned up to eleven. And his novel, The Monkey Wrench Gang, is one hell of an environmental adventure tale.

Expand full comment
author

I'm heading to Moab over Spring Break and am bringing Desert Solitaire. :)

Expand full comment

I loved The Salt Path by Raynor Winn, but also something else entirely, Bill Bryson's A Walk in the Woods.

Expand full comment
author

Haven't heard of The Salt Path — added to my list. I also loved A Walk in the Woods.

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

Great recommendations. I'm furiously adding to my WTR.

The first that came to mind for me was Bill Bryson's A Walk in the Woods followed by a childhood favorite, My Side of the Mountain (Jean Craighead George).

I saw someone mention Barbara Kingsolver's Animal, Vegetable, Miracle -- great book. I'd add her Prodigal Summer.

All the mentions of The Stranger in the Woods (which I appreciated but which didn't really leave me feeling like I'd visited nature) put me in mind of The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon...a different kind of outdoorsy read!

Expand full comment
author

I have My Side but haven't read it yet. Up soon!

Expand full comment

I loved My Side of the Mountain!

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

Came here to say "My Side of the Mountain!"

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon was a great book! Good suggestion!

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

I don't think it actually fits the category, but it fits the vibe! And it's a classic. The one that immediately came to mind was "All Creatures Great and Small"

Expand full comment
author

I've heard so many good things and haven't yet read it. I'll have to check it out!

Expand full comment

Loved that book!

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

The Emerald Mile by Kevin Fedarko

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

Good one. Loved that book.

Expand full comment
author

High on my list for this year, actually. :)

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

Walden I feel is best absorbed little bits at a time. Loved Braiding Sweetgrass.

Expand full comment

Braiding Sweetgrass was wonderful.

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

If you get the chance, listen to Robin read it on Audible. Her voice is as soothing as her words

Expand full comment

That sounds amazing.

Expand full comment
author

Yes! I've quite liked my slow pace with Walden.

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

The Overstory by Richard Powers is unforgettable. It's hard to sum this one up without being reductive: an epic tale of disparate individuals whose lives, whose family trees if you will, have been influenced and impacted by a tree or trees. They come together to save a stand of old-growth trees from being cut down, and nothing goes as planned. Disturbing, beautiful, haunting. There are passages and scenes that will never leave me. Powers is a marvel.

Expand full comment

I loved the Overstory too.

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

Dillard’s On Tinker Creek and Lopez’s Arctic Dreams. The most gorgeous nature writing, a sense of awe, and curiosity about the scope of nature in history and the cosmos.

Expand full comment

Was just going to wrote Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. One of the very best.

Expand full comment
author

Tinker Creek is up next after Walden for me. I have most of Lopez's books on my shelf, but haven't read 'em yet.

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

Here are some of my favorites!

-Dirt Work by Christine Byl: an honest account by a trail crew member that opened my eyes about the trails I walk and the people and hard work that created them.

-The Stranger in the Woods by Michael Finkel: the ultimate hikertrash is the man lived 27 years in Maine without speaking to any other person.

-Where You'll Find Me by Ty Gagne: an eye opening look at the thin line between survival and death in the White Mountains, and an evaluation of the decision making process that can determine which side of the line a hiker winds up on.

-On Trails by Robert Moor: probably the most lyrical treatise on why trails exist and why some choose to follow them.

-Grandma Gatewood's Walk by Ben Montgomery: account of Grandma Gatewood's groundbreaking AT thru-hike that highlights her determination and character.

-Smoky Jack by Paul J. Adams: lovely historical capsule of the dog who assisted the caretaker of the LeConte Lodge by fetching supplies on his own from a Gatlinburg store.

-The Old Ways by Robert Macfarlane: the author's search for historical pathways and what they mean through the years (or really any Macfarlane... highly recommended).

-The Last Season by Eric Blehm: story of the life of backcountry ranger Randy Morgenson, his commitment to the land he loved, and his mysterious disappearance.

Expand full comment
author

The Last Season is one of my unheralded favorites!

I've read Macfarlane's "Underland" and have been eager to revisit him.

Expand full comment

The Last Season was my pick. An incredible book.

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

A Sand County Almanac, by Aldo Leopold, is beautiful, companionable, and quietly funny. Here's how it begins:

January Thaw

Each year, after the midwinter blizzards, there comes a night of thaw when the tinkle of dripping water is heard in the land. It brings strange stirrings, not only to creatures abed for the night, but to some who have been asleep for the winter. The hibernating skunk, curled up in his deep den, uncurls himself and ventures forth to prowl the wet world, dragging his belly across the snow. His track marks one of the earliest datable events in that cycle of beginnings and ceasings which we call a year.

The track is likely to display an indifference to mundane affairs uncommon at other seasons; it leads straight across-country, as if its maker had hitched his wagon to a star and dropped the reins. I follow, curious to deduce his state of mind and appetite, and destination if any.

Expand full comment
author

Ah, I've heard great things about that classic!

Expand full comment

I have a tag on Goodreads labeled "Women in Nature." Last year I loved A Line in the World: A Year on the North Sea Coast by Dorthe Nors and currently I am reading Windswept: Life, Nature and Deep Time in the Scottish Highlands by Annie Worsley. Windswept is more nature oriented, but I love the quietness of memoirs focuses on the author's relationship to nature, particularly a coast, apparently. Next up is The Draw of the Sea by Wyl Menmuir, which features another another coast.

Expand full comment
author

Ooo fun, thanks for the recs!

Expand full comment

Annie Dillard's Pilgrim at Tinker Creek - I'm surprised not to see it mentioned yet.

Expand full comment

My favorite and yes Vanessa listed it above which I seconded.

Expand full comment
author

Up next as soon as I finish Walden. :)

Expand full comment

This one’s a bit more violent than most, but I’ve always loved Larry Kaniut‘s collection of grizzly stories, Alaska Bear Tales. It’s relentless.

Expand full comment
author

Oh awesome! I quite enjoyed the classic Night of the Grizzlies.

Expand full comment
Jan 9Liked by Jeremy Anderberg

Anything by David George Haskell. A Forest Unseen is eye-opening and The Song of Trees is just a beautiful book. I have just bought 13 Ways to Smell a Tree and Sounds Wild and Broken in the past week. Looking forward to reading them in the coming weeks.

Expand full comment
author

Added to my list.

Expand full comment