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Books for Earth Day

Earth Day is coming up April 22! We’ve gathered together some books to help you get in touch with nature.

April 20, 2021

Earth Day is coming up April 22! We’ve gathered together some books to help you get in touch with nature.

In this list: environmentalism, conservation, gardening, walking trails, nature.

 

Environmental Books

All We Can Save

All We Can Save
Truth, Courage, and Solutions for the Climate Crisis

Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, Katharine Keeble Wilkinson

Curated by two climate leaders, an anthology of provocative essays and illuminating artwork by dozens of women at the forefront of the climate change movement provides representative, nuanced and solution-oriented recommendations for fast and appropriate responses.

A Bright Future

A Bright Future
How Some Countries Have Solved Climate Change and the Rest Can Follow

Joshua S. Goldstein, Staffan A. Qvist

Explores how Sweden, France, South Korea, and Ontario all quickly replaced fossil fuels with clean energy and why the rest of the world should follow their example.

Climate Justice

Climate Justice
Hope, Resilience, and the Fight for a Sustainable Future

Mary Robinson

Describes the impact of climate change and offers uplifting stories of ordinary people who have stepped up to help save the planet, including a Mississippi hair dresser and a Ugandan farmer.

Climate of Hope

Climate of Hope
How Cities, Businesses, and Citizens Can Save the Planet

Michael R. Bloomberg, Carl Pope

The former New York City Mayor and the former Sierra Club head present a manifesto on how the benefits of taking action on climate change can be real, immediate and significant, sharing disparate perspectives on related issues while explaining how cities, businesses and everyday people can make positive changes regardless of Washington politics.

Drawdown

Drawdown
The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming

Paul Hawken

Provides one hundred solutions to remedy the climate change crisis, ranging from well-known to obscure, including wind energy, electric vehicles, and microbial farming.

The End of Ice

The End of Ice
Bearing Witness and Finding Meaning in the Path of Climate Disruption

Dahr Jamail

Describes the author’s visits to endangered global ecosystems to explore how humans will cope with the planet’s radically changing climate.

The Fragile Earth

The Fragile Earth
Writing From the New Yorker on Climate Change

David Remnick, Henry Finder

A wide-ranging anthology of The New Yorker’s groundbreaking reporting on the front lines of climate change includes Bill McKibben’s seminal “The End of Nature,” the Pulitzer Prize-winning work of Elizabeth Kolbert and more.

The Future We Choose

The Future We Choose
Surviving the Climate Crisis

Christiana Figueres, Tom Rivett-Carnac

A cautionary but hopeful report by the cofounders of Global Optimism and architects of the 2015 Paris Climate Change Agreement outlines urgent measures that must be taken to adapt to or reverse climate change.

The Hidden Life of Ice

The Hidden Life of Ice
Dispatches From a Disappearing World

Marco Tedesco

A pioneering researcher’s illuminating account of Arctic ice–its secret history and dire future. Tedesco unearths its secrets–from evidence of long-extinct “polar camels” to fantastically weird microorganisms living at freezing temperature in cryoconite holes–and weaves together the bald facts on climate change with poetic reflections on this endangered landscape, epic tales of Arctic explorers, and the legends of the rare local populations.

How to Avoid a Climate Disaster

How to Avoid a Climate Disaster
The Solutions We Have and the Breakthroughs We Need

Bill Gates

The technologist, business leader and philanthropist who founded Microsoft draws on the input of experts in physics, chemistry, biology, engineering, political science and finance to create an accessible, concrete plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and avoid certain environmental disaster.

Inconspicuous Consumption

Inconspicuous Consumption
The Environmental Impact You Don’t Know You Have

Tatiana Schlossberg

The New York Times science writer explains the impact of climate change and environmental pollution on everyday life, examining largely unrecognized consequences in the specific areas of technology, food, fashion and fuel.

A Life on Our Planet

A Life on Our Planet
My Witness Statement and a Vision for the Future

David Attenborough

In this scientifically informed account of the changes occurring in the world over the last century, an award-winning broadcaster and natural historian shares a lifetime of wisdom and a hopeful vision for the future.

Living With a Green Heart

Living With a Green Heart
How to Keep Your Body, Your Home, and the Planet Healthy in a Toxic World

Gay Browne

In an increasingly toxic world, the paths to environmental health and personal well-being run parallel. The journey begins with a few small steps.

Living Without Plastic

Living Without Plastic
More Than 100 Easy Swaps for Home, Travel, Dining, Holidays, and Beyond

Brigette Allen, Christine Wong

An illustrated guide to reducing personal plastic waste counsels readers on how to understand plastic terminology, listing more than 100 alternatives to everyday single-use items, from water bottles and straws to cosmetics and grocery bags.

No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference

No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference

Greta Thunberg

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.

The Story of More

The Story of More
How We Got to Climate Change and Where to Go From Here

Hope Jahren

From the bestselling author of Lab Girl comes a slim, urgent missive on the defining issue of our time: here is Hope Jahren on climate change, our timeless pursuit of more, and how the same human ambition that got us here can also be our salvation.

Superman's Not Coming

Superman’s Not Coming
Our National Water Crisis and What We the People Can Do About It

Erin Brockovich

The environmental activist and consumer advocate, whose case against Pacific Gas and Electric was dramatized in an Oscar-winning film, looks at our present situation with water and reveals the imminent threats and shows us how we can each take action.

The Traprock Landscapes of New England: Environment, History, and Culture

The Traprock Landscapes of New England: Environment, History, and Culture

Peter M. LeTourneau

Stunning photography and fact-filled text reveal new perspectives on southern New England’s most unique natural region. A picturesque journey through the traprock highlands from New Haven, Connecticut to Amherst, Massachusetts, this book captures the majesty of wild windswept cliffs, panoramic summit vistas, and intimate details of the natural world through the eyes of an artist and the mind of a scientist.

Under a White Sky

Under a White Sky
The Nature of the Future

Elizabeth Kolbert

The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Sixth Extinction returns to humanity’s transformative impact on the environment, now asking: After doing so much damage, can we change nature, this time to save it?

 

Conservation Books

Cat Tale

Cat Tale
The Wild, Weird Battle to Save the Florida Panther

Craig Pittman

The award-winning journalist and author of the best-selling Oh, Florida! traces the story of the unlikely rescue of the Florida panther from extinction while revealing the political factors and colorful personalities that are impacting the species today.

The Father of American Conservation

The Father of American Conservation
George Bird Grinnell, Adventurer, Activist, and Author

Thom Hatch

Award-winning author, Thom Hatch presents the definitive biography of George Bird Grinnell (1849-1938), who was recognized in his time as “The Father of American Conservation.” This book chronicles not only Grinnell’s life, but also offers a history of his accomplishments in saving the wildlife and natural resources of this country.

Half-Earth

Half-Earth
Our Planet’s Fight for Life

Edward O. Wilson

A conclusion to the trilogy by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of the National Book Award-finalist The Meaning of Human Existence argues that humanity must consider the histories of millions of other Earth species and increase the planet’s regions of natural reserves in order to prevent future mass extinctions.

Leave It as It Is

Leave It as It Is
A Journey Through Theodore Roosevelt’s American Wilderness

David Gessner

An urgent call to protect America’s public lands, told through New York Times bestselling author David Gessner’s American road trip with our greatest conservationist, Theodore Roosevelt, as his guide.

The Man Who Planted Trees

The Man Who Planted Trees
A Story of Lost Groves, the Science of Trees, and a Plan to Save the Planet

Jim Robbins

Describes the efforts of a former alcoholic nurseryman, whose near-death experience prompted him to attempt to find the best specimens of the U.S.’s 872 known species of trees and use them to propagate their offspring around the world.

Nature's Best Hope

Nature’s Best Hope
A New Approach to Conservation That Starts in Your Yard

Douglas W. Tallamy

The best-selling author of Bringing Nature Home outlines practical next-step approaches to conservation, instructing homeowners on how to turn yards into supportive wildlife habitats that do not require government regulation.

Owls of the Eastern Ice

Owls of the Eastern Ice
A Quest to Find and Save the World’s Largest Owl

Jonathan C. Slaght

A field conservationist tracks his five-year study of the elusive Blakiston’s fish owl of eastern Russia, where his small scientific monitoring team immersed themselves in local culture while learning about the species’ survival behaviors and shrinking habitat.

Rightful Heritage

Rightful Heritage
Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Land of America

Douglas Brinkley

Examines the environmental legacy of Franklin Roosevelt and the New Deal, evaluating the creation of the Civilian Conservation Corps and the dozens of state park systems that were protected by his decisions.

Your Water Footprint

Your Water Footprint
The Shocking Facts About How Much Water We Use to Make Everyday Products

Stephen Leahy

Examines the amount of water a typical American uses, offering advice on limiting waste, making water-smart purchases, and changing habits.

 

Gardening Books

Beginner Gardening Step by Step

Beginner Gardening Step by Step
A Visual Guide to Yard and Garden Basics

Emma Tennant, Jane Simmonds

A guide for the beginning gardener features photographic illustrations that give step-by-step guides to start building your own garden or green space, including tips on planting, potting, pruning and lawn maintenance.

Butterfly Gardening

Butterfly Gardening
The North American Butterfly Association Guide

Jane Hurwitz

A resource for creating a garden that attracts and sustains butterflies, connecting us with some of the most beautiful creatures in the natural world and bringing new levels of excitement and joy to gardening, covers every aspect on plants and practices to draw butterflies to all kinds of gardens.

Essential Native Trees and Shrubs for the Eastern United States

Essential Native Trees and Shrubs for the Eastern United States
The Guide to Creating a Sustainable Landscape

Tony Dove, Ginger Woolridge

Praised by Doug Tallamy as “an important new tool to our native plant libraries,” this go-to guide is perfect for gardeners of all skill levels looking to add sustainable native flora to any horticultural project east of the Mississippi River Valley.

Floratopia

Floratopia
110 Flower Garden Ideas for Your Yard, Patio, or Balcony

Jan Johnsen

Create a floral haven with help from a celebrated garden designer and flower lover.

Gardening With Less Water

Gardening With Less Water
Low-Tech, Low-Cost Techniques for Using Up to 90% Less Water in Your Garden

David A. Bainbridge

Demonstrates how to use low-tech and repurposed materials, like buried clay pots, wicking systems and other porous containers, to deliver water directly to a plant’s roots, discourage evaporation and reduce watering needs.

Gardening Your Front Yard

Gardening Your Front Yard
Projects and Ideas for Big & Small Spaces

Tara Nolan

Provides sage advice and step-by-step projects to transform your front yard into a beautiful outdoor living space.

Growing Under Cover

Growing Under Cover
Techniques for a More Productive, Weather-Resistant, Pest-Free Vegetable Garden

Niki Jabbour

The award-winning author of Groundbreaking Food Gardens presents an in-depth guide to building controlled growing spaces for productive vegetable gardening, offering coverage of topics ranging from row covers and low tunnels to cold frames and hoophouses

Handmade Bird, Bee, and Bat Houses

Handmade Bird, Bee, and Bat Houses
25 Beautiful Homes, Feeders, and More to Attract Wildlife Into Your Garden

Michele McKee-Orsini

Handmade Bird, Bee, and Bat Houses features homes to build for everything from bees to bats, and bluebirds to butterflies. Each house is beautifully designed, with colorful details, but is also perfectly adapted for its intended inhabitants.

The Humane Gardener

The Humane Gardener
Nurturing a Backyard Habitat for Wildlife

Nancy Lawson

This color-illustrated gardening guide for general readers shows how home gardeners can coexist with wildlife and insects. Drawing on ideas from science and horticulture, it gives suggestions on creating wildlife habitats, using native plants, providing nesting sites, and removing hazards such as pesticides.

Lawns Into Meadows

Lawns Into Meadows
Growing a Regenerative Landscape

Owen Wormser

In Lawns Into Meadows, landscape designer Owen Wormser makes a case for the power and generosity of meadows. In a world where lawns have wreaked havoc on our natural ecosystems, meadows offer a compelling solution. They establish wildlife and pollinator habitats.

The Living Landscape

The Living Landscape
Designing for Beauty and Biodiversity in the Home Garden

Rick Darke, Doug Tallamy

Describes how gardeners can support sustainability and biodiversity by including in their garden plants that provide food for birds and bugs and serve as a pollination source for bees, suggesting plants for every climate and region.

Mastering the Art of Flower Gardening

Mastering the Art of Flower Gardening
A Gardener’s Guide to Growing Flowers, From Today’s Favorites to Unusual Varieties

Matt Mattus

Mastering the Art of Flower Gardening is a lushly illustrated book with highly practical, firsthand tips on how to grow truly interesting and unusual flowers.

Mother Earth News Guide to Vegetable Gardening

Mother Earth News Guide to Vegetable Gardening
Building & Maintaining Healthy Soil, Wise Watering, Pest Control Strategies, Home Composting, Dozens of Growing Guides for Fruits & Vegetables

Mother Earth News

The Mother Earth News Guide to Vegetable Gardening is a must-have volume packed with time-tested information, photographs, and charming illustrations for home gardeners everywhere.

Native Plants for New England Gardens

Native Plants for New England Gardens

Mark Richardson

Native plants are drought tolerant, disease resistant, wildlife friendly, and environmentally sound. This handy, practical guide focuses on 100 great native flowers, ground covers, shrubs, ferns, and grasses that will thrive in New England gardens. This book covers 100 native plants with information useful to gardeners alongside beautiful photos.

The Pollinator Victory Garden

The Pollinator Victory Garden
Win the War on Pollinator Decline With Ecological Gardening: How to Attract and Support Bees, Beetles, Butterflies, Bats, and Other Pollinators

Kim Eierman

An environmental horticulturalist and landscape designer shows us how to create a beautiful landscape that attracts and supports many different specials of pollinators so that we can win the war against the demise of these essential animals.

Regrow Your Veggies

Regrow Your Veggies
Growing Vegetables From Roots, Cuttings and Scraps

Melissa Raupach, Felix Lill

This must-have gardening resource reveals how to recycle and regrow more than 20 popular fresh vegetables right a home to get the most out of your favorite foods.

Saving Seeds

Saving Seeds
A Home Gardener’s Guide to Preserving Plant Biodiversity

Dan Jason

Part garden guide, part manifesto, this is an invitation to preserve our dynamic, sustainable food supply– one seed at a time.

 

Walking Trail

Connecticut Walk Book

Connecticut Walk Book
The Complete Guide to Connecticut’s Blue-Blazed Hiking Trails

Connecticut Forest & Park Association

Lace up your boots and experience some of the best hiking in New England. Whether you are a day-tripper or long-distance hiker, old hand or novice, you’ll find trails suited to every ability and interest.

Forest Bathing

Forest Bathing
How Trees Can Help You Find Health and Happiness

Qing Li

A guide to the therapeutic Japanese practice of shinrin-yoku, or forest bathing, demonstrates how it can reduce stress levels, improve the immune system, and promote health and happiness, and includes more than one hundred photographs from forests aroundthe world.

Nature Walks in Connecticut

Nature Walks in Connecticut

René Laubach, Charles W.G. Smith

Discover the wildlife and local history of more than 40 of Connecticut’s most scenic trails and walks. From the mountains and lush woodlands of the west, through the fertile Connecticut River Valley, to the beautiful eastern shoreline, this is the perfect guide for hikers, walkers, and nature lovers.

New England Fall Foliage Road Trips

New England Fall Foliage Road Trips

Amy C. Balfour

Whether exploring your own backyard or somewhere new, discover the freedom of the open road with Lonely Planet’s New England Fall Foliage Road Trips . Featuring fouramazing road trips, plusup-to-date advice on the destinations you’ll visit along the way, you cancruise Lake Champlain on a schooner, pack a picnic in the Berkshires, or take a Vermont farm tour, all with your trusted travel companion

The Outer Beach

The Outer Beach
A Thousand-Mile Walk on Cape Cod’s Atlantic Shore

Robert Finch

The nature writer chronicles his fifty-year relationship with the beaches of Cape Cod, noting the beauty and brutality of the landscape through essays he has written over the years.

The Songs of Trees

The Songs of Trees
Stories From Nature’s Great Connectors

David George Haskell

A professor of biology and environmental studies, and Pulitzer Prize finalist for The Forest Unseen, visits twelve trees around the world and discusses the biological relationships that sustain life, including bacterial communities, cooperative animals and fungal partners.

 

A Shared Landscape

Earth Almanac

Earth Almanac
Nature’s Calendar for Year-Round Discovery

Ken Keffer

Earth Almanac presents the greatest hits of North American nature. Structured around phenology, the study of seasonal patterns in nature, these day-by-day descriptions offer insight into activities and connections throughout the natural world.

Five-Star Trails, Adirondacks

Five-Star Trails, Adirondacks
Your Guide to 46 Spectacular Hikes

Tim Starmer

The author takes you along on 46 of the best hikes of the Adirondacks of Upstate New York.

The Lost Art of Reading Nature's Signs

The Lost Art of Reading Nature’s Signs
Use Outdoor Clues to Find Your Way, Predict the Weather, Locate Water, Track Animals–And Other Forgotten Skills

Tristan Gooley

Based on the author’s outdoor experiences, presents a compendium of information and forecasting details that can be gathered from observations about plants, animals, landscapes, buildings, clouds, stars, sun, and the moon.

Natural Wonders of Connecticut & Rhode Island

Natural Wonders of Connecticut & Rhode Island
Exploring Wild and Scenic Places

Carol Henshaw

Outdoor enthusiasts and families will find abundant opportunities to learn about nature in Natural Wonders of Connecticut & Rhode Island. This guide highlights more than 50 unspoiled state and national parks, forests, and reserves. They include all the information needed to enjoy these national treasures.

On Trails

On Trails
An Exploration

Robert Moor

On Trails is a wondrous exploration of how trails help us understand the world– from invisible ant trails to hiking paths that span continents, from interstate highways to the Internet.

Rail-Trails Southern New England

Rail-Trails Southern New England
The Definitive Guide to Multiuse Trails in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island

The experts from Rails-to-Trails Conservancy present 52 of the best rail-trails and other multiuse pathways in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island.

Walking to Listen

Walking to Listen
4,000 Miles Across America, One Story at a Time

Andrew Forsthoefel

A young man describes how he embarked on a cross-country quest for life guidance, walking to the Pacific from Pennsylvania, and recounts the extraordinary kindness he received from strangers and the invaluable lessons he learned from everyone he met.