Coming into the Country is an unforgettable account of Alaska and Alaskans. It is a rich tapestry of vivid characters, observed landscapes, and descriptive narrative, in three principal segments that deal, respectively, with a total wilderness, with urban Alaska, and with life in the remoteness of the bush. Readers of McPhee's earlier books will not be unprepared for his surprising shifts of scene and ordering of events, brilliantly combined into an organic whole. In the course of this volume we are made acquainted with the lore and techniques of placer mining, the habits and legends of the barren-ground grizzly, the outlook of a young Athapaskan chief, and tales of the fortitude of settlers―ordinary people compelled by extraordinary dreams. Coming into the Country unites a vast region of America with one of America's notable literary craftsmen, singularly qualified to do justice to the scale and grandeur of the design.
The authoritative book on Alaska marine life, Guide to Marine Mammals of Alaska is a clear and concise look at all twenty-nine of Alaska’s mammal species, including whales, dolphins, seals, walrus, and polar bears. Now in its fourth edition, this award-winning book is fully revised with updated information on range and status of all the species.Meant to be a user-friendly and travel-ready resource, the guide provides an overview of each species with data on body type, size, color, behavior, habitat, and more. Maps detail range and migration patterns while full color photos accompany each entry. A glossary, introduction to mammal types, and naming chart make recognizing the different Alaska mammals easy and accessible. In addition to the extensive photographs, the book includes Pieter Folkens’s highly accurate illustrations to assist in precise identification.The book itself is a rugged tool that is waterproof and spiral bound, encouraging readers to get out and start spotting fascinating Alaska creatures from land or from sea.
In this sweeping epic of the northernmost American frontier, James A. Michener guides us through Alaska’s fierce terrain and history, from the long-forgotten past to the bustling present. As his characters struggle for survival, Michener weaves together the exciting high points of Alaska’s story: its brutal origins; the American acquisition; the gold rush; the tremendous growth and exploitation of the salmon industry; the arduous construction of the Alcan Highway, undertaken to defend the territory during World War II. A spellbinding portrait of a human community fighting to establish its place in the world, Alaska traces a bold and majestic saga of the enduring spirit of a land and its people. Praise for Alaska “Few will escape the allure of the land and people [Michener] describes. . . . Alaska takes the reader on a journey through one of the bleakest, richest, most foreboding, and highly inviting territories in our Republic, if not the world. . . . The characters that Michener creates are bigger than life.”—Los Angeles Times Book Review “Always the master of exhaustive historical research, Michener tracks the settling of Alaska [in] vividly detailed scenes and well-developed characters.”—Boston Herald “Michener is still, sentence for sentence, writing’s fastest attention grabber.”—The New York Times
The history of Alaska is filled with stories of new land and new riches -- and ever present are new people with competing views over how the valuable resources should be used: Russians exploiting a fur empire; explorers checking rival advances; prospectors stampeding to the clarion call of "Gold!"; soldiers battling out a decisive chapter in world war; oil wildcatters looking for a different kind of mineral wealth; and always at the core of these disputes is the question of how the land is to be used and by whom.While some want Alaska to remain static, others are in the vanguard of change. Alaska: Saga of a Bold Land shows that there are no easy answers on either side and that Alaska will always be crossing the next frontier.
Bold, inventive and highly graphic, the indigenous art of the Northwest Coast is distinguished by its sophistication and complexity. It is also composed of basically simple elements, which, guided by a rich mythology, create images of striking power. This indispensable and beautifully illustrated book is the first to introduce everyone, from the casual observer to the serious collector of Northwest Coast prints, to the forms, cultural background and structures of this highly imaginative art. The elements of style are introduced; the myths and legends which shape the motifs are interpreted; the stylistic differences between the major cultural groupings are defined and illustrated. Raven, Thunderbird, Killer Whale, Bear: all the traditional forms are here, deftly analyzed by a professional writer and artist who has a deep understanding of this powerful culture.
In this coming-of-middle-age memoir, Kim Heacox, writing in the tradition of Abbey, McPhee, and Thoreau, discovers an Alaska reborn from beneath a massive glacier, where flowers emerge from boulders, moose swim fjords, and bears cross crevasses with Homeric resolve. In such a place Heacox finds that people are reborn too, and their lives begin anew with incredible journeys, epiphanies, and successes. All in an America free of crass commercialism and overdevelopment. Braided through the larger story are tales of gold prospectors and the cabin they built sixty years ago; John Muir and his intrepid terrier, Stickeen; and a dynamic geology professor who teaches earth science "as if every day were a geological epoch." Nearly two million people come to Alaska every summer, some on large cruise ships, some in single kayaks--all in search of the last great wilderness, the Africa of America. It is exactly the America Heacox finds in this story of paradox, love, and loss.
In April 1992 a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. His name was Christopher Johnson McCandless. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a new life for himself. Four months later, his decomposed body was found by a moose hunter. How McCandless came to die is the unforgettable story of Into the Wild.Immediately after graduating from college in 1991, McCandless had roamed through the West and Southwest on a vision quest like those made by his heroes Jack London and John Muir. In the Mojave Desert he abandoned his car, stripped it of its license plates, and burned all of his cash. He would give himself a new name, Alexander Supertramp, and , unencumbered by money and belongings, he would be free to wallow in the raw, unfiltered experiences that nature presented. Craving a blank spot on the map, McCandless simply threw the maps away. Leaving behind his desperate parents and sister, he vanished into the wild.Jon Krakauer constructs a clarifying prism through which he reassembles the disquieting facts of McCandless's short life. Admitting an interst that borders on obsession, he searches for the clues to the dries and desires that propelled McCandless. Digging deeply, he takes an inherently compelling mystery and unravels the larger riddles it holds: the profound pull of the American wilderness on our imagination; the allure of high-risk activities to young men of a certain cast of mind; the complex, charged bond between fathers and sons.When McCandless's innocent mistakes turn out to be irreversible and fatal, he becomes the stuff of tabloid headlines and is dismissed for his naiveté, pretensions, and hubris. He is said to have had a death wish but wanting to die is a very different thing from being compelled to look over the edge. Krakauer brings McCandless's uncompromising pilgrimage out of the shadows, and the peril, adversity , and renunciation sought by this enigmatic young man are illuminated with a rare understanding--and not an ounce of sentimentality. Mesmerizing, heartbreaking, Into the Wild is a tour de force. The power and luminosity of Jon Krakauer's stoytelling blaze through every page.
Here is Nelson's luminously wise account of his exploration of an unnamed island in the Pacific Northwest. This book revises our own relationship with nature, allowing us to observe it and also to participate in it with reverence and a sense of wonder.
With the same rigorous observation (natural and social), invigorating stylishness, and encyclopedic learning that he brought to his National Book Award-winning Bad Land, Jonathan Raban conducts readers along the Inside Passage from Seattle to Juneau. The physical distance is 1,000 miles of difficult-and often treacherous-water, which Raban navigates solo in a 35-foot sailboat.But Passage to Juneau also traverses a gulf of centuries and cultures: the immeasurable divide between the Northwest's Indians and its first European explorers-- between its embattled fishermen and loggers and its pampered new class. Along the way, Raban offers captivating discourses on art, philosophy, and navigation and an unsparing narrative of personal loss.
Murder at Five Finger Light: A Jessie Arnold Mystery
By: Sue Henry
The Jessie Arnold mysteries offer “real thrills set against the wild beauty of Alaska” (Minneapolis Star-Tribune)—and this time, Jessie unscrambles a deadly puzzle along the Alaskan Inside Passage… Two of Jessie’s friends are throwing a party at their new digs—an old lighthouse on the Alaskan Inside Passage. Not a party in the typical sense, but one where guests earn their keep by scraping, painting, and generally restoring Five Finger Light, named after the long, low islands around it. So Jessie decides to leave her partner-in-crime, Alex, alone for a few days and lend a hand. With the company of old friends and a view to die for, Jessie won’t soon forget this weekend—especially when she stumbles across a dead body. Looks like an accident. But even as a frantic Alex learns that someone’s cut the phone lines and wrecked the radio, Jessie realizes there’s a killer loose on the island. Worse yet, the killing spree might not be over—even though the party certainly is....
The Alaskan frontier is revealed at its most inspiring and unforgiving, through the eyes of its awestruck visitors. An enraptured John Muir first glimpses Glacier Bay; Jon Krakauer marvels at the sight of a grizzly’s footprints in the snow; Erma Bombeck comments on the “cruise from hell,” and more. Map.
For thousands of years Alaska has called to us. The hardy souls who first answered that call endured bitter temperatures, maddening isolation, and often harrowing adventures for the privilege of living there, and many lost their lives in the process. From the earliest human explorers to Russian fur trappers, from Klondike gold seekers to today's miners and oilmen, from Alaska's native people to the millions of tourists who visit the state every year, people have come to Alaska to marvel at its beauty, rejoice in its riches, and measure themselves against its challenges. The wonder of Alaska, as well as its terrifying dangers, come to life in this anthology, featuring true adventures described by some of the best writers in the world, each hand picked by bestselling writer and Alaska aficionado Spike Walker. Alaska: Tales of Adventure from the Last Frontier will open your eyes and stir your soul as it celebrates the untamed beauty of Alaska.Inside you will find unmatched tales of adventure by the following authors:Spike WalkerJack LondonLarry KaniutRoger A. CarasLew FreedmanDana StabenowGary PaulsenJean AspenAnn Mariah CookJohn MuirWashington IrvingAnd many more...
GUIDE TO THE BIRDS OF ALASKA has been a must-have for Alaska birders for more than thirty years. In the sixth edition, Robert Armstrong provides hundreds of new photographs. Every bird is now illustrated including the casuals and accidentals. This comprehensive guide provides the most current knowledge about the birds in Alaska.
Alaska has both vast wilderness tracts and a modern transportation system, making eco-travelling in the state easy as well as exciting. From the broad expanses of tundra in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and the rich seabird colonies of the Bering Sea to the glacier-bedecked snowy mountains and magnificent forests of the Southeast, wildlife viewing opportunities abound. In this book is all the Information you will need to find, identify, and learn about Alaska's magnificent animal life.
Alaska Birds: A Folding Pocket Guide to Familiar Species (A Pocket Naturalist Guide)
By: James Kavanagh, Waterford Press
The Last Frontier State is the permanent or migratory home of 493 species of birds, including the state bird, the willow ptarmigan and the bird with the longest migration route in the world, the artic tern, who winters in the Antarctic (2,200 miles each way). This beautifully illustrated guide highlights over 140 familiar and unique species and includes an ecoregion map featuring prominent bird-viewing areas. Laminated for durability, this lightweight, pocket-sized folding guide is an excellent source of portable information and ideal for field use by visitors and residents alike. Made in the USA.
Alaska Wildlife: A Folding Pocket Guide to Familiar Species (A Pocket Naturalist Guide)
By: James Kavanagh, Waterford Press
The state marine mammal, the bowhead whale, is one of thousands of species of animals inhabiting the diverse ecosystems found throughout the Last Frontier State. This beautifully illustrated guide highlights over 140 familiar and unique species of mammals, birds, amphibians, fishes and seashore creatures and includes an ecoregion map featuring prominent wildlife-viewing areas. Laminated for durability, this lightweight, pocket-sized folding guide is an excellent source of portable information and ideal for field use by visitors and residents alike. Made in the USA.