Reviews and Blog Posts: nature

Red Planet, Blue Moon: Resources for Skywatchers

Map of the Moon, Mars, and Saturn for May 20-22. From skyandtelescope.com

Living in the city can make it hard to get a good view of the night sky, but once in a blue moon the stars and planets put on a show you can see through the city lights. No, seriously...there's a blue moon this weekend! Plus, Mars will be as close as it's been in a decade, so it's going to be shining like a beacon. If you look to the southeast after sunset, Mars, Saturn, and the bright red star Antares will all be hanging out together in the constellation Scorpius, and the full moon will be passing through and joining them over the weekend.

All the birds in the sky

by Charlie Anders

Reviewer Rating:
4

Not just for fans of genre fiction, this mash up of science and magic will appeal to anyone who likes a well told story about choices and the fate of the world. Patricia and Laurence meet in middle school--both awkward in their own ways, Patricia connects with nature on a...

The Corpse Flower's Cousins: Books and Videos about Freaky Plants

Corpse Flower at US Botanic Garden

This week, one of the most talked about residents of Denver was a giant flower named Stinky. The big, smelly blossom at the Denver Botanic Gardens made the national news, and people have been waiting over three hours to get a look at it. Stinky even has its own StinkyCam. But the corpse flower isn't alone in the world of bizarre and amazing plants.

Getting to Know Colorado Wildflowers

Colorado's Best Wildflower Hikes

The weather outside right now isn't exactly inviting--first it rains, then it snows, then it rains again. It's a good day to be inside. But snow or no snow, we all know winter is finished, and all this moisture means the hillsides are about to be covered with wildflowers. Most Coloradans recognize famous one like the Rocky Mountain Columbine, but what about the lesser-known wildflowers? Have you met the Blue Toadflax? How about the Curvepod Fumewort? Little Pink Elephants? I haven't, I'm afraid, but I've decided this is the year I will.

How Colorado Got So Rugged: Books on Colorado Geology

Messages in Stone Book Cover

If you want to see geologic marvels, Colorado is the place to be. Tall mountains, deep canyons, desert mesas, dinosaur bones, glacial valleys--this state has it all. But have you ever wondered how it got this way? Why is Colorado so rugged, when states like Iowa and Kansas are so flat? What raised those mountains and carved those valleys?

The human age the world shaped by us

by Diane Ackerman

Reviewer Rating:
3

Ackerman's book is a fascinating look at the Anthopecene Age--where we are now living in geologic time--and the global effects that humans are having on our planet and all of the species that live on it. Covering topics as varied as climate change, green buildings, invasive species, epigenetics, animals in...

Nature noir : a park ranger's patrol in the Sierra

by Jordan Fisher Smith

Reviewer Rating:
5

Nature Noir, A Park Ranger's Patrol in the Sierra, is one part Edward Abbey and one part Elmore Leonard. I picked it up because I enjoy behind-the-scenes books about our national parks.

Jordan Fisher Smith was tasked with patrolling the canyons of California's American River, which has long been slated to...

Falling into place : an intimate geography of home

by Catherine Reid

Reviewer Rating:
4

A lovely book of essays that examine our connection to nature, the cycle of the seasons, and the meaning of home. Reid writes about the natural landscape and her inner landscape with equal attention to deal and joy at discovery. A beautiful book to delve into if you're missing natural...

Neil deGrasse Tyson is back!

oh my gosh he's back!

I’m not sure about you, but I miss seeing Neil deGrasse Tyson on NOVA. Good news! He revamped Carl Sagan’s Cosmos and it is airing on Fox (KDVR 31) starting this Sunday at 8. It’s been a great year and a half for science documentaries and books, so if you need more geek in your week, here’s a list:

Some of my current favorite documentaries:

Ubiquitous : celebrating nature's survivors

by Joyce Sidman

Reviewer Rating:
5

Brightly and beautifully illustrated, this poetry book includes a poem to one of nature’s survivors on one page and a scientific explanation on the opposite page. The author and illustrator begin with bacteria and end with humans 4.6 billion years later. Along the way, we meet mollusks, lichens, sharks, beetles,...

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