The Songs of Trees

The Songs of Trees

Stories From Nature's Great Connectors

Book - 2017
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Penguin Putnam
The author of the Pulitzer Prize finalist The Forest Unseen visits with nature&;s most magnificent networkers &; trees 
&;Both a love song to trees, an exploration of their biology, and a wonderfully philosophical analysis of their role they play in human history and in modern culture.&; &; Science Friday

David Haskell has won acclaim for eloquent writing and deep engagement with the natural world. Now, he brings his powers of observation to the biological networks that surround all species, including humans. Haskell repeatedly visits a dozen trees, exploring  connections with people, microbes, fungi, and other plants and animals. He takes us to  trees in cities (from Manhattan to Jerusalem), forests (Amazonian, North American, and boreal) and areas on the front lines of environmental change (eroding coastlines, burned mountainsides, and war zones.)  In each place he shows how human history, ecology, and well-being are intimately intertwined with the lives of trees.
Scientific, lyrical, and contemplative, Haskell reveals the biological connections that underpin all life.  In a world beset by barriers, he reminds us that life&;s substance and beauty emerge from relationship and interdependence.

Baker & Taylor
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.

& Taylor

Presents observations and conclusions made by the author after he repeatedly visited trees around the world, noting the human impact on their growth and their relationship with other living organisms.

Publisher: New York, New York : Viking, [2017]
ISBN: 9780525427520
Branch Call Number: 577.3 H273s
Characteristics: xi, 292 pages ; 22 cm


From the critics

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Apr 10, 2019

Poetic and beautifully written, with in-depth information, it is a must read so we all understand the importance of native trees in each part of the world. Every living being is connected to trees and this vital network must be cherished and protected.

May 30, 2018

Trees are far more complex and interesting than their static exterior would suggest. The complexity of how they live and interact is truly fascinating.

ArapahoeLauraRose May 07, 2018

Each tree anecdote was engaging and unique, giving insight into the life of the individual tree, its connection with its plant and animal community, and larger human-ecological connections. The book is also beautifully written; I have never before read a description of tree-root fungus which sounded like poetry.

Feb 12, 2018

It is fitting that Haskell references Baker’s "The Peregrine" in this book as his poetic prose has the same visceral impact on the reader’s senses. He has a gift for capturing the sounds of nature in onomatopoeic words. (I found myself listening to the winter forest in a different way, the swish of white pine and the rattle of red oak leaves in the damp east wind.) But more than this, Haskell is an extraordinary writer and philosopher. He is a keen observer of nature, which is not a separate entity from humanity, but part of a whole where we “unself”. His essays on trees in cities, Denver and New York, are the most powerful and offer some hope for better stewardship of the green space to which we are drawn. This is a book to reread and savour. I look forward to his next one.
[Note: OPL does not have a copy of "The Peregrine".]

Aug 29, 2017

The Songs of Trees: a lyrically transfixing, minute inspection of a ubiquitous, taken-for-granted species, namely trees. If time is taken, one perceives a subtly haunting quality enveloping trees. Could it be that our fate is entwined with the quality of their existence? Are they sentinels as regards our very survival? Required of the reader is a modicum of perseverance, for the richness of detail in the various observations is quite amazing, thus precluding anything but a measured perusal.

ontherideau Aug 18, 2017

In depth information of tree life sytems. The Hidden Life of Trees is more readable if you have interest.


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