Cover Image: Wilderness and the American Spirit

Wilderness and the American Spirit

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Member Reviews

My gosh, this read was so interesting. I have a particular interest in this topic after playing Red Dead Redemption 2 - and this book delivered

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I received an ARC from Netgalley

The author's constant opinion expressed through sarcasm and subjectivity prevented the reader from enjoying the book, as the direction of chapters and their relevance to the theme were unclear. The use of terms like "magical" and lack of explanation for bold statements left the reader feeling disconnected and unable to form their own opinions. Overall, the author's strong bias overshadowed the content of the book, making it unenjoyable. Sadly I didn't enjoy this book

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Thanks to Over Cup Press and NetGalley for this free ARC in return for my honest opinion.

Very interesting book that mixes a lot of personal opinion with the authors knowledge of geology and environmental advocacy. My personal philosophies differ from the author, but it also is good to be able to read other points of view.
I have learned a lot about things like the Applegate Trail and the Humbolt Sink, as well as really interesting stories of people who traveled West and who settled in the pristine American wilderness. But the author flounders when she tries to correlate certain acts in American history into a destruction of the Wilderness, and it appears that there is nothing that government can do to reverse the development of the American West. But no matter your point of view, at least half of this book is enlightening. Unfortunately the other half of this book is questionable historical analysis.

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I wanted to like this book. The author’s constant opinion expressed through sarcasm and subjectivity prevented me from enjoying the book.

I was constantly unsure of the direction or point of the chapters and how it related to the theme. I felt like the author rushed through history using events like war, to prove his hypothesis throughout. How does the chapter on the Micky Mouse club relate to wilderness?

More than once, the term “magical” referring to the way people thought was used. People thought the way they did based on their experiences and history up until that moment. They had less information and historical context to use when making decisions. Using the term “magical” is not objective and appears the author insinuates they are foolish or stupid. “Those ordinary citizens, those dupes lured by God and gold…”

There are many statements throughout this book that have little explanation, leaving me thinking, wait, what? .“Many were marched right off the edge of the continent into the frigid waters of the Pacific Ocean. West.” This is a bold statement. I need some explanation. “Everywhere, parking lots paved paradises.” Everywhere? “For the first time more Americans described themselves as urban rather than rural.” Was this a poll?

The author’s opinion felt pushed through the words and left me with little ability to form my own through the case presented. I simply didn’t enjoy it.

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