As the summer kicks off here in the Northern Hemisphere, millions of people will flock to beaches, mountains and lakes in search of a brief respite from everyday life. Whether you’ve got a vacation coming up or are just daydreaming about one, get closer to nature with these book recommendations from Conservation International (CI) staff.
1. “The Extended Phenotype: The Long Reach of the Gene,” by Richard Dawkins
“The trouble with evolution is that everyone thinks they understand it.” Richard Dawkins’ writings changed my life. This book is a rollicking good read — never boring, always stimulating and sometimes surprising. Its arguments are pervasive and persuasive — how natural selection actually works at the level of individual genes — and, above all, why this is the most magical show on Earth. You’ll understand all of life and its wonders just a little bit more after reading this book.”
– Keith Lawrence, senior director of CI’s seascapes program
2. “The Urban Bestiary: Encountering the Everyday Wild,” by Lyanda Lynn Haupt
“An aspiring “urban naturalist” myself, I’m looking forward to reading Haupt’s humorous but ecologically insightful observations of the nature she encounters on a daily basis near her Seattle home. After moving to D.C. from Maine two years ago, I still struggle at times to appreciate the smaller pockets of “everyday wild” that call this urban center home — so I’m eager to learn more about Haupt’s perspective on uncovering wilderness just outside your window.”
– Cassandra Kane, communications manager of CI’s ecosystem finance division