MTPR

nonfiction

"Sometimes the job we have to do is often uncomfortable, whether it’s killing a deer to put it out of its pain, or to open it up. It’s kind of that pen too, to open up stories, to open up wounds that need to be reopened to be able to heal properly. I think the knife serves that metaphorical purpose as well." -- CMarie Fuhrman

Somewhere between hunting for gold in Latin America as a geologist and getting married to a new husband, thirty-three-year-old Susan Purvis loses her way.

Susan comes to believe that a puppy and working on ski patrol at the last great ski town in Colorado will improve her life. When she learns about avalanches that bury people without warning, she challenges herself: “What if I teach a dog to save lives?” This quest propels her to train the best possible search dog, vowing to never leave anyone behind.

Scott Parker

"A Way Home" is a love letter to Oregon and an ode to living in the present moment. Living for several years in Minnesota, Scott Parker finds himself longing for the Oregon of his youth. He explores this longing by returning to his home state both over the course several visits and through the unfolding of memory, to find out what he is capable of understanding about time, home, and himself.

Ben Montgomery

A Pulitzer Prize finalist and the author of the New York Times bestseller Grandma Gatewood’s Walk, Ben Montgomery shares this unforgettable journey in THE MAN WHO WALKED BACKWARD: An American Dreamer’s Search for Meaning in the Great Depression. Montgomery’s book sheds light on an era that reshaped how Americans saw their place in the world. It was the back side of the boom years, the golden days of Al Capone and fast-talking swindlers, the Dust Bowl and lines of hungry families. It was a time when the American heartland was a patchwork of small towns, some of which welcomed Wingo with open arms while others sent him packing. It was the time that spawned the phrase “the American Dream” and a dark period in European history. 

Sam and Kate figured that good writing served with a slice of pie and a shot of whiskey would create an energized atmosphere uncommon at literary events. The contributors, drawn mainly from the west, but not exclusively, responded with surprising, funny, heartbreaking, fantastically written stories and poems. The book will include a smattering of pie recipes and whiskey-centric cocktails. Look here for tasty literary servings.

Milkweed

A hearth is many things: a place for solitude, a source of identity, something we make and share with others, a history of ourselves and our homes. It is the fixed center we return to, and it is just as intrinsically portable. It is, in short, the perfect metaphor for what we seek in these complex and contradictory times—set in flux by climate change, economic emergencies, migration, the refugee crisis, and the dislocating effects of technology.

"The 'tree of life' that we have believed in as the picture of evolutionary history, ever since Darwin, is not entirely wrong but drastically incomplete and too simple. Tree branches always diverge, and it turns out evolutionary lineages diverge and converge. So limbs grow together and there are channels that have moved from one branch to another. The premise of my book is that the tree of life is not strictly a tree—it is a web, it’s a network, it’s something for which we don’t have a visual metaphor. It’s a tangled tree and the history of life is radically different from what we thought we knew 45-50 years ago. . ." -- David Quammen 

MIT Press

We have all heard that there are no longer any places left on Earth untouched by humans. The significance of this goes beyond statistics documenting melting glaciers and shrinking species counts. It signals a new geological epoch. In The Synthetic Age, Christopher Preston argues that what is most startling about this coming epoch is not only how much impact humans have had but, more important, how much deliberate shaping they will start to do.

You know the type: the woman who won’t shut up, who’s too brazen, too opinionated—too much. It’s not that she’s an outcast (she might even be your friend, or your wife, or your mother) so much as she’s a social variable. Sometimes, she’s the life of the party; others, she’s the center of gossip. She’s the unruly woman, and she’s one of the most provocative, powerful forms of womanhood today.

"I learned about five years ago that honey bees can’t pollinate tomatoes. Honey bees are not native to North America, which I did know, but I was surprised that I did not know that honey bees can’t pollinate tomatoes because I’ve been a gardener for decades. I was like, “How did I miss this?!” I felt sort of like a dope, and then I started asking other people and hardly anybody knew that honey bees can’t pollinate tomatoes but that are a number of our native bees, those that evolved right here, can. So I thought, “People should know about this. I’m going to write gardening articles, and I’m going teach gardening for pollinators classes, because people should know who’s out there pollinating their tomatoes.” And I started reading about the bees and I sort of fell in love with them." -- Paige Embry on her love affair with native bees.

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