Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Review: Gathering Moss by Robin Wall Kimmerer

Moss is beautiful. I love hiking through a lush and peaceful forest carpeted with moss, or contemplating how different kinds of mosses complete the composition of a Japanese garden.

Gathering Moss: A Natural and Cultural History of Mosses (OSU Press) is a series of connected personal essays by scientist Robin Wall Kimmerer, who spent years studying mosses all over the world. Drawing as much on her Native American heritage and experiences as a mother as on science, Kimmerer explains how mosses live and uses the history and interconnectedness of moss with other species as a metaphor for living in the world.

Kimmerer won the John Burroughs Medal Award for Natural History Writing for Gathering Moss. It reminded me of Annie Dillard's Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, but without so many bugs.

I wanted to read Gathering Moss because I am trying to incorporate more moss in my own landscaping. Kimmerer's essays turned out to be as inspirational as they are informative. Anyone with a curiosity about natural history and our connection with nature would enjoy this book.


If you would like me to list your review of Gathering Moss or any other John Burroughs Medal Award winner, please leave a comment with a link and I will add it.

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