Natural history & science

1519 Reading the Covid landscape

Words from the Dead: Relevant Readings in the Covid Age by Sean Arthur (Art) Joyce Victoria: Ekstasis Editions, 2022 $25.95 / 9781771714587 Reviewed by Christopher A. Shaw * Capturing the “Landscape of the Imagination” in the Age of Covid No matter where one stands on the Covid-19 pandemic, vaccines, and who’s responsible, the events of…
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1518 Brazen timber theft

Tree Thieves: Crime and Survival in North America’s Woods by Lyndsie Bourgon Vancouver: Greystone Books, 2022 $34.95 / 9781771647199 Reviewed by Brett Josef Grubisic * For many readers, Tree Thieves will surprise, inform, disturb, alarm, and enlighten. This impressive, absorbing, and often riveting debut work of non-fiction introduces a serious issue, as well as cause…
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1503 Critter care at Langley

Caring for Critters: One Year at a Wildlife Rescue Centre by Nicholas Read Victoria: Heritage House, 2021 $19.95 / 9781772033878 Reviewed by Caileigh Broatch * Caring for Critters starts at the beginning of Nicholas Read’s year-long volunteer service at Critter Care, a wildlife rehab centre in Langley, British Columbia, and the book logs his 12-month…
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1500 Plant journey in Haida Gwaii

Plants of Haida Gwaii: Third Edition by Nancy J. Turner Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2021 $29.95 / 9781550179149 Reviewed by Jasḵwaan Bedard * Plants of Haida Gwaii: Third Edition by Nancy Turner is a celebrated study of the Haida people’s relationship with the plants of Haida Gwaii. Dr. Turner, a renowned ethnobotanist, chronicles her extensive…
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1499 Not done yet

Going to Ground: Essays on Aging, Chronic Pain and the Healing Power of Nature by Luanne Armstrong Qualicum Beach: Caitlin Press, 2022 $24.95 / 9781773860756 Reviewed by Claire Sicherman * I was really looking forward to reading Luanne Armstrong’s new book, Going to Ground: Essays on Aging, Chronic Pain and the Healing Power of Nature,…
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1493 Holding fast

Bog Treasure by Eileen Casey and Jeanne Cannizzo Dublin: Arlen House, 2022, distributed by Syracuse University Press $19.95 / 9781851322695 Reviewed by Jane Frankish * Editor’s note: readers might also like to hear Eileen Casey read a selection of her bog poems in Treasure, a short film commissioned by Offaly Arts for Culture Night, 2021,…
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1430 A mushroom forager’s bible

Mushrooms of British Columbia: Royal BC Museum Handbook by Andy MacKinnon and Kem Luther Victoria: Royal British Columbia Museum Press, 2021 $34.95 / 9780772679550 Reviewed by Jocie Brooks * With over ten mushroom books already on my shelf, I hesitated as to whether I needed yet another guide book for fungi, but as soon as…
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1413 Teaching watershed warriors

Upstream, Downstream: Exploring Watershed Connections by Rowena Rae Victoria: Orca Books, 2021 $19.95 / 9781459823921 Reviewed by Theo Dombrowski * A children’s book that is also a call to arms? Without so much as a single sabre rattle, a new book by biologist and writer Rowena Rae, titled, disarmingly, Upstream, Downstream, and subtitled Exploring Watershed…
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1395 Return of the sea otter

Sea Otters: A Survival Story by Isabelle Groc with forewords by Dame Judi Dench & David F. Mills Victoria: Orca Books, 2020 $24.95 / 9781459817371 Reviewed by Valerie Green * Sea Otters: A Survival story by Isabelle Groc is a delightful wildlife book for all ages. Author Isabelle Groc has written an exemplary survival story…
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1372 A riotous mix of species

The Flora and Fauna of Coastal British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest, Expanded Edition by Collin Varner Victoria: Heritage House, 2021 $39.95 / 9781772033564 Reviewed by Jocie Brooks * Glossy colour photos of stone sheep, chinook salmon, salal berries and a black-capped chickadee grace the cover of Collin Varner’s The Flora and Fauna of Coastal…
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1350 Making & taking Strathcona Park

A Journey Back to Nature: A History of Strathcona Provincial Park by Catherine Marie Gilbert Victoria: Heritage House, 2021 $26.95  /  9781772033588 Reviewed by Matthew Downey * The past year in British Columbia has seen activism and protests centred on the forest industry and controversies over the logging of old growth rainforest. In such a…
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1343 Mystery at 41st and Dunbar

In Sight: My Life in Science and Biotech by Julia Levy, with a foreword by Molly Shoichet Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2020 $34.95 / 9781487508319 Reviewed by Sheldon Goldfarb * The reviewer is reading Julia Levy’s book on the bus to UBC and has just arrived at 41st and Dunbar when he gets to…
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1323 Eavesdropping in the bush

Caught on the Trail: Nature’s Wildlife Selfies by Dale Bakken and Sandra Lynch-Bakken Surrey: Hancock House, 2020 $24.95 / 9780888390585 Reviewed by Jocie Brooks * A curious black bear nuzzles the camera on the cover of Caught on the Trail: Nature’s Wildlife Selfies. This book offers “up close and personal” views of BC’s wildlife that…
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1314 Shake, shear, rattle, and roll

On Borrowed Time: North America’s Next Big Earthquake by Gregor Craigie Fredericton: Goose Lane Editions, 2021 $22.95 / 9781773102061 Reviewed by Brian Harvey * What does it mean to be unsettled? Roget’s Thesaurus offers some synonyms — unstable, displaced, even deranged — and to me the word sits somewhere between “uneasy” and “totally freaked out.”…
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1305 McGillivray’s essential geography

Geography of British Columbia: People and Landscapes in Transition (fourth edition) by Brett McGillivray Vancouver: UBC Press, 2020 $55.00 / 9780774864329 Reviewed by Ken Favrholdt * Brett McGillivray’s Geography of British Columbia: People and Landscapes in Transition has withstood the test of time since its first edition in 2000, which I reviewed for BC Studies…
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