Staff Picks

Exploration: Nature for all ages March 31, 2020 Staff Picks

Trying to keep our partners, friends, children, and ourselves entertained whilst staying at home can feel like a daunting task. We've compiled a list of activity books and regular old reading books to make your reading nook feel like the wider world. Today we're exploring nature!

Activity Kits for Kids

These activity books are great for keeping hands and minds busy.

Geology Lab for Kids: 52 Projects to Explore Rocks, Gems, Geodes, Crystals, Fossils, and Other Wonders of the Earth's Surface

Got a kid that loves rocks? This book has so many experiments and facts that will intrigue and delight all rock lovers.

Exploring Nature Activity Book for Kids: 50 Creative Projects to Spark Curiosity in the Outdoors

Another excellent book with activities that can be done in the backyard!

Elementary School Books

A mixture of picture and chapter books all about nature and its beauty.

Because of an Acorn

A picture book all about the connections that make up an ecosystem.

Me... Jane

“Yes, there are other picture book biographies about Jane Goodall and her life's work with the primates, but none are as sweet, lovely, and perfectly put together as this one. McDonnell, the author and illustrator or the Mutts cartoons and numerous other books for children, combines his distinct illustration style with childhood drawings and sketches from Goodall herself to create a reading experience for children that mimics the methodology of the world-famous primatologist: Explore, discover, and observe. Me...Jane is a joy to read and is sure to satisfy even the most inquisitive of readers.”
— Carter Hasegawa, Porter Square Books, Cambridge, MA

Nature Anatomy: The Curious Parts and Pieces of the Natural World

This beautifully illustrated book will be sure to intrigue you and your child.

The Wonders of Nature

This is another gorgeous book that captures how wonderful the natural world is. It is perfect to make a small room feel like a nature sanctuary.

Pocket Genius: Rocks and Minerals: Facts at Your Fingertips

A whole bunch o' facts that they can tell you about all day long.

A Wolf Called Wander

A great juvenile fiction book about a wolf's journey finding home. A great book for kids interested in wildlife and survival.

Middle School Books

Hoot

This is a romp with blossoming eco-activists through Florida.

The Wondrous Workings of Planet Earth

An illustrated tour of the planet exploring ecosystems large and small, from reefs, deserts, and rainforests to a single drop of water—from the New York Times bestselling author of Women in Science.

Pax

Pax and Peter have been inseparable ever since Peter rescued him as a kit. But one day, the unimaginable happens: Peter's dad enlists in the military and makes him return the fox to the wild.

Who is Jane Goodall?

Jane Goodall, born in London, England, always loved animals and wanted to study them in their natural habitats. So at age twenty-six, off she went to Africa! Goodall's up-close observations of chimpanzees changed what we know about them and paved the way for many female scientists who came after her. Now her story comes to life in this biography with black-and-white illustrations throughout.

What is Climate Change

Learn more about what climate change means and how it's affecting our planet.

World Without Fish

World Without Fish is the uniquely illustrated narrative nonfiction account—for kids—of what is happening to the world’s oceans and what they can do about it.

High School Books

This Changes Everything

The most important book yet from the author of the international bestseller The Shock Doctrine, a brilliant explanation of why the climate crisis challenges us to abandon the core “free market” ideology of our time, restructure the global economy, and remake our political systems.

In short, either we embrace radical change ourselves or radical changes will be visited upon our physical world. The status quo is no longer an option.


No One Is Too Small To Make a Difference

The groundbreaking speeches of Greta Thunberg, the young climate activist who has become the voice of a generation, including her historic address to the United Nations 

Ship Breaker

This thrilling bestseller and National Book Award Finalist is a gritty, high-stakes adventure of a teenage boy faced with conflicting loyalties, set in a dark future America devastated by the forces of climate change.

Climate Changed

What are the causes and consequences of climate change? When the scale is so big, can an individual make any difference? Documentary, diary, and masterwork graphic novel, this up-to-date look at our planet and how we live on it explains what global warming is all about. 

Books for Adults

The Genius of Birds

Birds are astonishingly intelligent creatures. According to revolutionary new research, some birds rival primates and even humans in their remarkable forms of intelligence. In The Genius of Birds, acclaimed author Jennifer Ackerman explores their newly discovered brilliance and how it came about.

Lab Girl

Geobiologist Hope Jahren has spent her life studying trees, flowers, seeds, and soil. Lab Girl is her revelatory treatise on plant life—but it is also a celebration of the lifelong curiosity, humility, and passion that drive every scientist.

The Soul of an Octopus

In pursuit of the wild, solitary, predatory octopus, popular naturalist Sy Montgomery has practiced true immersion journalism. From New England aquarium tanks to the reefs of French Polynesia and the Gulf of Mexico, she has befriended octopuses with strikingly different personalities—gentle Athena, assertive Octavia, curious Kali, and joyful Karma. Each creature shows her cleverness in myriad ways: escaping enclosures like an orangutan; jetting water to bounce balls; and endlessly tricking companions with multiple “sleights of hand” to get food.

Desert Solitaire

Desert Solitaire is a collection of vignettes about life in the wilderness and the nature of the desert itself by park ranger and conservationist, Edward Abbey. The book details the unique adventures and conflicts the author faces, from dealing with the damage caused by development of the land or excessive tourism, to discovering a dead body. However Desert Solitaire is not just a collection of one man’s stories, the book is also a philosophical memoir, full of Abbey’s reflections on the desert as a paradox, at once beautiful and liberating, but also isolating and cruel. Often compared to Thoreau’s Walden, Desert Solitaire is a powerful discussion of life’s mysteries set against the stirring backdrop of the American southwestern wilderness.

Braiding Sweet Grass

As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer has been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these two lenses of knowledge together to take us on "a journey that is every bit as mythic as it is scientific, as sacred as it is historical, as clever as it is wise" (Elizabeth Gilbert).

 

 

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