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Nature

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  1. 8.0 hrs • 9/6/2016 • Unabridged

    In his long-awaited memoir, Yvon Chouinard—legendary climber, businessman, environmentalist, and founder of Patagonia, Inc.—shares the persistence and courage that have gone into being head of one of the most respected and environmentally responsible companies on earth. From his youth as the son of a French Canadian blacksmith to the thrilling, ambitious climbing expeditions that inspired his innovative designs for the sport’s equipment, Let My People Go Surfing is the story of a man who brought doing good and having grand adventures into the heart of his business life—a book that will deeply affect entrepreneurs and outdoor enthusiasts alike.

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    Let My People Go Surfing

    Foreword by Naomi Klein
    8.0 hrs • 9/6/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 10.0 hrs • 8/23/2016 • Unabridged

    The daring behind-Nazi-lines rescue of priceless pedigree horses by American soldiers in the closing days of World War Two—a riveting equine adventure story from the author of The Eighty-Dollar Champion. While Hitler’s attempt to create an Aryan master race is well known, his simultaneous effort to build an equine master race made up of the finest purebred horses is not. Hidden on a secret farm in Czechoslovakia, these beautiful animals were suddenly imperiled in the spring of 1945 as the Russians closed in on the Third Reich from the east and the Allies attacked from the west. Thanks to the daring of an American colonel, an Austrian Olympian in charge of the famous Lipizzaner stallions, and the support of US General George Patton, a covert mission was planned to kidnap these endangered animals and smuggle them into safe territory—though many disapproved of risking human lives to save mere horses.

    Available Formats: CD
    The Perfect Horse by Elizabeth Letts

    The Perfect Horse

    10.0 hrs • 8/23/16 • Unabridged
    CD
  3. 12.8 hrs • 8/23/2016 • Unabridged

    From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Eighty-Dollar Champion comes the riveting true story of the valiant rescue of priceless pedigree horses in the last days of World War II. As the Russians closed in on Hitler from the east and the Allies attacked from the west, American soldiers discovered a secret Nazi effort to engineer a master race of the finest purebred horses. With the support of U.S. general George S. Patton, a passionate equestrian, the Americans planned an audacious mission to kidnap these beautiful animals and smuggle them into safe territory—assisted by a daring Austrian colonel who was both a former Olympian and a trainer of the famous Lipizzaner stallions.

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    The Perfect Horse

    12.8 hrs • 8/23/16 • Unabridged
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  4. 8.1 hrs • 8/10/2016 • Unabridged

    John Wesley Powell was a pioneer American explorer, ethnologist, and geologist in the 19th Century. He set out to explore the Colorado and the Grand Canyon. He gathered nine men, four boats and food for ten months and set out from Green River, Wyoming. Passing through dangerous rapids, the group passed down the Green River to its confluence with the Colorado River (then also known as the Grand River upriver from the junction), near present-day Moab, Utah. The expedition’s route traveled through the Utah canyons of the Colorado River, which Powell described in his published diary as having …wonderful features—carved walls, royal arches, glens, alcove gulches, mounds and monuments. From which of these features shall we select a name? We decide to call it Glen Canyon. One man (Goodman) quit after the first month and another three (Dunn and the Howland brothers) left at Separation Rapid in the third, only two days before the group reached the mouth of the Virgin River after traversing almost 1,500 km. Powell retraced the route with another expedition, producing photographs, an accurate map, and various papers, including ethnographic reports of the area’s Native Americans and a monograph on their languages.

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    Canyons of the Colorado

    8.1 hrs • 8/10/16 • Unabridged
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  5. 9.2 hrs • 8/8/2016 • Unabridged

    Twenty-five years ago they bought a homestead, in the middle of Vancouver Island, on the water’s edge. There are still reflections off the small lake at the foot of Mount Benson- of gardens and vineyards and woodland encounters. Westwood Lake Chronicles is a dreamscape diary, a backyard inventory of life and death in paradise, and the desperate pressures that threaten its existence. Lawrence Winkler has written an anthem to living deliberately with nature, and the virtues of simplicity, self-sufficiency, solitude, and silence. Find refuge.

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    Westwood Lake Chronicles

    9.2 hrs • 8/8/16 • Unabridged
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  6. 7.3 hrs • 7/12/2016 • Unabridged

    Linda Kohanov, author of the bestselling The Tao of Equus, pioneered a deep understanding of “the way of the horse,” including the extraordinary nonverbal communication of skilled riders and the collaborative power of “herding cultures” through the centuries. She has adapted this profound, time-tested approach to modern life and the organizations in which top-down management hierarchies have become obsolete. Detailing the five roles of “master herders”—Dominant, Leader, Sentinel, Nurturer/Companion, Predator—she shows readers how to recognize and utilize them in the “modern tribes” of our workplaces and other social organizations. Richly nuanced and yet wonderfully practical, this model facilitates the mobility, adaptability, and innovation essential today, and allows groups to achieve goals, overcome obstacles, and sustain one another with the powerful grace exemplified by skilled horse and rider.

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    Five Roles of a Master Herder

    7.3 hrs • 7/12/16 • Unabridged
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  7. 7.1 hrs • 7/8/2016 • Unabridged

    To geologists, rocks are beautiful, roadcuts are windowpanes, and the earth is alive-a work in progress. The cataclysmic movement that gives birth to mountains and oceans is ongoing and can still be seen at certain places on our planet. One of these is the Basin and Range region centered in Nevada and Utah. In this first book of a Pulitzer Prize-winning collection, the author crosses the spectacular Basin and Range with geology professor Kenneth Deffeyes in tow. McPhee draws on Deffeyes’ expertise to dazzle you with the vast perspective of geologic time and the fascinating history of vanished landscapes. The effect is guaranteed to expand your mind. McPhee’s enthusiasm is infectious, as he provides one of the best introductions to plate tectonics and the New Geology. His elegant style is more pleasing than ever with narrator Nelson Runger’s smooth, enthusiastic delivery. Runger mines the book’s rich veins of poetic prose and subtle humor-and the result is pure gold.

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  8. 19.9 hrs • 7/5/2016 • Unabridged

    There are redwoods in California that were ancient by the time Columbus first landed, and pines still alive that germinated around the time humans invented writing. There are Douglas firs as tall as skyscrapers, and a banyan tree in Calcutta as big as a football field.From the tallest to the smallest, trees inspire wonder in all of us, and in The Tree, Colin Tudge travels around the world—throughout the United States, the Costa Rican rain forest, Panama and Brazil, India, New Zealand, China, and most of Europe—bringing to life stories and facts about the trees around us: how they grow old, how they eat and reproduce, how they talk to one another (and they do), and why they came to exist in the first place. He considers the pitfalls of being tall; the things that trees produce, from nuts and rubber to wood; and even the complicated debt that we as humans owe them.Tudge takes us to the Amazon in flood, when the water is deep enough to submerge the forest entirely and fish feed on fruit while river dolphins race through the canopy. He explains the “memory” of a tree: how those that have been shaken by wind grow thicker and sturdier, while those attacked by pests grow smaller leaves the following year; and reveals how it is that the same trees found in the United States are also native to China (but not Europe).From tiny saplings to centuries-old redwoods and desert palms, from the backyards of the American heartland to the rain forests of the Amazon and the bamboo forests, Colin Tudge takes the reader on a journey through history and illuminates our ever-present but often ignored companions. A blend of history, science, philosophy, and environmentalism, The Tree is an engaging and elegant look at the life of the tree and what modern research tells us about their future.

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    The Tree by Colin Tudge

    The Tree

    19.9 hrs • 7/5/16 • Unabridged
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  9. 14.2 hrs • 6/29/2016 • Unabridged

    The Founding Fish is the shad, and John McPhee’s veneration for it is both scientific and culinary. McPhee was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Annals of the Former World. Noted for his accessible and perceptive studies of the physical world, he weaves together strands of personal, natural, and national history in this absorbing study that traces the shad’s importance from the seventeenth century to his family’s dinner table.

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    The Founding Fish

    14.2 hrs • 6/29/16 • Unabridged
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  10. 7.5 hrs • 6/21/2016 • Unabridged

    A passionate naturalist explores what it’s really like to be an animal―by living like them.How can we ever be sure that we really know the other? To test the limits of our ability to inhabit lives that are not our own, Charles Foster set out to know the ultimate other: the non-humans, the beasts. And to do that, he tried to be like them, choosing a badger, an otter, a fox, a deer, and a swift. He lived alongside badgers for weeks, sleeping in a sett in a Welsh hillside and eating earthworms, learning to sense the landscape through his nose rather than his eyes. He caught fish in his teeth while swimming like an otter; rooted through London garbage cans as an urban fox; was hunted by bloodhounds as a red deer, nearly dying in the snow. And he followed the swifts on their migration route over the Strait of Gibraltar, discovering himself to be strangely connected to the birds.A lyrical, intimate, and completely radical look at the life of animals―human and other―Being a Beast mingles neuroscience and psychology, nature writing and memoir to cross the boundaries separating the species. It is an extraordinary journey full of thrills and surprises, humor and joy. And, ultimately, it is an inquiry into the human experience in our world, carried out by exploring the full range of the life around us.

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    Being a Beast

    7.5 hrs • 6/21/16 • Unabridged
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  11. 0.9 hrs • 6/21/2016 • Abridged

    Jay Parini’s readings are always an event, but too rare. For the first time, Parini has recorded his best known and most recent poems in an audiobook that welcomes the listener to enter his universe, which revolves around his deep connection to nature and underlines his concerns about the impacts of pollution and climate change. The audiobook follows the pattern of his popular readings, with the poet introducing each poem with context and comments, invariably revealing and often amusing. In these beautiful, haunting poems, Parini writes about the landscapes of mining country, of the railroads of Pennsylvania, of farm country, of worlds lost, families dispersed, faith tried and contested. Poems include: 1) Over the River 2) West Mountain Epilogue 3) In the Library After Hours 4) Historiography 101 5) The Grammar of Affection 6) Unpatriotic Gore 7) Poem with Allusions 8) Lament of the Middle Man 9) Old Frogs 10) Blessings 11) After the Terror 12) I Was There 13) The President Eats Breakfast Alone 14) High School 15) At the Ruined Monastery in Amalfi 16) The Trees Are Gone 17) Rain Before Nightfall 18) Playing in the Mines 19) The Conversation in Oxford 20) The Missionary Visits Our Church in Scranton 21) Coal Train 22) Anthracite Country 23) Swimming in Late September 24) This Reaping 25) High Gannet 26) Creed 27) The Insomniac Thinks of God 28) History 29) The Art of Subtraction 30) Amores (After Ovid) 31) Borges in Scotland 32) The Lost Soldiers 33) Old Teams 34) Reading Through the Night 35) A Knock at Midnight

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    West Mountain Epilogue

    0.9 hrs • 6/21/16 • Abridged
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  12. 12.0 hrs • 6/7/2016 • Unabridged

    The fascinating story of the century-long attempt to control nature in the American wilderness as told through the prism of a tragic death at Yellowstone When twenty-five-year-old Harry Walker was killed by a bear in Yellowstone Park in 1972, the civil trial prompted by his death became a proxy for bigger questions about American wilderness management that had been boiling for a century. At immediate issue was whether the Park Service should have done more to keep bears away from humans, but what was revealed as the trial unfolded was just how fruitless our efforts to regulate nature in the parks had always been. The proceedings drew to the witness stand some of the most important figures in twentieth-century wilderness management, including the eminent zoologist A. Starker Leopold, who had produced a landmark conservationist document in the 1950s, and all-American twin researchers John and Frank Craighead, who ran groundbreaking bear studies at Yellowstone. Their testimonies would help decide whether the government owed the Walker family restitution for Harry’s death, but it would also illuminate decades of patchwork efforts to preserve an idea of nature that had never existed in the first place. In this remarkable excavation of American environmental history, nature writer and former park ranger Jordan Fisher Smith uses the story of one man’s tragic death to tell the larger narrative of the futile, sometimes fatal, attempts to remake wilderness in the name of preserving it. Moving across time and between Yellowstone, Yosemite, and Glacier National Parks, Engineering Eden shows how efforts at wilderness management have always been undone by one fundamental problem—that the idea of what is “natural” dissolves as soon as we begin to examine it, leaving us with little framework to say what wilderness should look like and which human interventions are acceptable in trying to preserve it. In the tradition of John McPhee’s The Control of Nature and Alan Burdick’s Out of Eden, Jordan Fisher Smith has produced a powerful work of popular science and environmental history, grappling with critical issues that we have even now yet to resolve.

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    Engineering Eden by Jordan Fisher Smith

    Engineering Eden

    12.0 hrs • 6/7/16 • Unabridged
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  13. 5.8 hrs • 5/17/2016 • Unabridged

    In One Wild Bird at a Time, Heinrich returns to his great love: close, day-to-day observations of individual wild birds. Heinrich’s observations lead to fascinating questions—and sometimes startling discoveries. A great crested flycatcher bringing food to the young acts surreptitiously and is attacked by the mate. Why? A pair of Northern flickers hammering their nest-hole into the side of Heinrich’s cabin delivers the opportunity to observe the feeding competition between siblings, and to make a related discovery about nest-cleaning. One of a clutch of redstart warbler babies fledges out of the nest from twenty feet above the ground, and lands on the grass below. It can’t fly. What will happen next?

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    One Wild Bird at a Time

    5.8 hrs • 5/17/16 • Unabridged
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  14. 8.3 hrs • 5/10/2016 • Unabridged

    One of North America’s most destructive fires, and the amazing true story of how its survivors escaped to change a nation. On September 1, 1894 two forest fires converged on the town of Hinckley, Minnesota, trapping over 2,000 people. Daniel J. Brown recounts the events surrounding the fire in the first and only book to chronicle the dramatic story that unfolded. Whereas Oregon’s famous “Biscuit” fire in 2002 burned 350,000 acres in one week, the Hinckley fire did the same damage in five hours. The fire created its own weather, including hurricane-strength winds, bubbles of plasma-like glowing gas, and 200-foot-tall flames. In some instances, “fire whirls,” or tornadoes of fire, danced out from the main body of the fire to knock down buildings and carry flaming debris into the sky. Temperatures reached 1,600 degrees Fahrenheit—the melting point of steel. As the fire surrounded the town, two railroads became the only means of escape. Two trains ran the gauntlet of fire. One train caught on fire from one end to the other. The heroic young African American porter ran up and down the length of the train, reassuring the passengers even as the flames tore at their clothes. On the other train, the engineer refused to back his locomotive out of town until the last possible minute of escape. In all, more than four hundred people died, leading to a revolution in forestry management practices and federal agencies that monitor and fight wildfires today. Author Daniel Brown has woven together numerous survivors’ stories, historical sources, and interviews with forest fire experts in a gripping narrative that tells the fascinating story of one of North America’s most devastating fires and how it changed the nation.

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    Under a Flaming Sky

    8.3 hrs • 5/10/16 • Unabridged
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  15. 7.1 hrs • 5/3/2016 • Unabridged

    In this gripping memoir, the sole survivor of the disastrous 2013 fire in Yarnell, Arizona recalls the natural disaster that took the lives of 19 “hotshots—firefighters trained specifically to battle wildfires. Brendan McDonough was on the verge of becoming an inveterate heroin addict when he decided to enlist in Granite Mountain, an elite hotshot crew of wildland firefighters based in Arizona. Thanks to his crew’s firm but loving encouragement, McDonough made the cut and battled many extreme blazes alongside his newfound “brothers,” receiving a life with purpose as part of a team. Then, on June 30, 2013, during a fire at which McDonough was serving as lookout, a freak inferno trapped and killed all 19 members of his crew. My Lost Brothers traces McDonough’s minute-by-minute account of witnessing his fellow hotshots’ brave, selfless battle—as well as its aftermath.

    Available Formats: Download, CD

    My Lost Brothers

    7.1 hrs • 5/3/16 • Unabridged
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  16. 6.4 hrs • 5/3/2016 • Unabridged

    In the tradition of Deep Down Dark and A Perfect Storm, comes the harrowing, and tragic true-life story of one of America’s deadliest wildfires and the heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice. When a bolt of lightning ignited a hilltop in the sleepy town of Yarnell, Arizona, in June of 2013, setting off a blaze that would grow into one of the deadliest fires in American history, the twenty men who made up the Granite Mountain Hotshots sprang into action. An elite crew trained to combat the most challenging wildfires, the Granite Mountain Hotshots were a ragtag family, crisscrossing the American West and wherever else the fires took them. The Hotshots were loyal to one another and dedicated to the tough job they had. There’s Eric Marsh, their devoted and demanding superintendent who turned his own personal demons into lessons he used to mold, train, and guide his crew; Jesse Steed, their captain, a former Marine, a beast on the fire line and a family man who wasn’t afraid to say “I love you” to the firemen he led; Andrew Ashcraft, a team leader still in his twenties who struggled to balance his love for his beautiful wife and four children and his passion for fighting wildfires. We see this band of brothers at work, at play, and at home, until a fire that burned in their own backyards leads to a national tragedy. Impeccably researched, drawing upon more than a hundred hours of interviews with the firefighters’ families, colleagues, state and federal officials, and fire historians and researchers, New York Times Phoenix Bureau Chief Fernanda Santos has written a riveting, pulse-pounding narrative of an unthinkable disaster, a remarkable group of men and the raging wildfires that threaten our country’s treasured wild lands.

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    The Fire Line

    6.4 hrs • 5/3/16 • Unabridged
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