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Part of a shelf here is dedicated to writing about nature, mostly essays. Rachel Carson is missing there. I think it is because I found Silent Spring quite a difficult read. The essay you review is marvellous though.
On a different note altogether, I read someplace else that you celebrated your birthday last saturday. Congratulations!


I've heard the Carson's books about the ocean are beautiful but I had no idea. This is gorgeous. I'm really going to have to read them now.


Sounds like a really marvellous essay! I just checked and our stack collection has one of her earlier books in Finnish. It's probably her first book. I'll have to go and take a look tomorrow...
And Happy birthday to you, too! :)



Catharina--I love nonfiction but I never pick up books on nature, which is something I'd like to change (since I do find the subject interesting and important). I've not read Silent Spring, though I know I have a copy. Maybe one of her books on the sea would be more accessible--this was a lovely essay. And thanks for the birthday wishes--it was Saturday and I was fortunate to get a few more gift cards for books! :)
Stefanie--I'm only familiar with her book Silent Spring--I had no idea what other sorts of books she wrote. I loved this essay and may have to find the book this was published in!
Tiina--I plan on looking to see what my library has as well. I really enjoyed this essay and love anything about the sea, so I really should read more of her work! And thanks for the Birthday wishes! :)

Dorothy W.

I think this essay is the only work I've read of Carson's (and I don't remember it!), but Hobgoblin has read quite a bit of her writing, and he's always said she writes really well. I think good science and nature writers are really admirable -- it's cool to combine fields that seem so different, science and writing. And science can be so challenging to understand, we need good science writers!


I've often heard of Carson but have never read anything by her. This sounds wonderful. Your book of essays is providing some gems, Danielle!


Dorothy--It's hard to remember so many essays. They would all float out my head, too, but if I write about them I usually have some tiny inkling of what they were about (not always though!). She is a beautiful writer--something you really don't expect from a scientist. And I had never really thought of the shore being a living, breathing place--it's cool to think about.
Litlove--This was my first taste of her work. I really do need to read more science/nature. I also need more hours in the day. And This collection of essays is really turning out to be full of great selections! I'm using this more than the Lopate!

Buried In Print

If you're intrigued by Carson and enjoy reading letters, I think you'd especially appreciate Always, Rachel: The Letters of Rachel Carson and Dorothy Freeman, 1952-1964, An Intimate Portrait of a Remarkable Friendship, which was edited by Freeman's granddaughter. It's truly lovely.


Buried in Print--I do like letters and will have to see if my library has this collection. Letters are interesting anyway, no matter the topic. They're sort of like biographies--getting a personal look at an author, which can be very revealing!

Ariel/Sycorax Pine

I used to teach this in my "Reading and Writing the Modern Essay" course - and it was a very polarizing essays. Students either said that it was the best essay we read all semester, or that it was profoundly dull and even a bit disneyish (with all that bizarrely fairy tale language). But both seemed to be gut reactions - emotional ones - rather than analytical ones. And that was interesting in and of itself.


Ariel/Sycorax Pine--How interesting. I really loved her writing style, but that is a taste thing and very subjective. I suppose it can be hard to separate emotions out from how we read to be more analytical (I expect I rely heavily on my emotions, too). It would be interesting to see how students/readers react.

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