I confess that I have a preference for reading non-fiction books. I like real stories, and I like to learn something and experience adventures undertaken by others, especially in natural surroundings. So here are a few of our new books you might like if you have the same reading preferences.
“Brave the Wild River: The Untold Story of Two Women Who Mapped the Botany of the Grand Canyon,” is authored by science journalist Melissa Sevigny. She recounts how Lois Jotter and Elzada Clover stood up to the misogyny of the times to become botanists. They underwent great risks running the Colorado River to be the first to survey and catalog the plants in the Grand Canyon. The women were truly trailblazers in their determination during the summer of 1938 to take on the dangerous 600 mile, 43-day boat expedition through the Grand Canyon, collecting and preserving 500 plant specimens. A map and photographs enhance this intriguing selection.
“The Last Ride of the Pony Express: My 2,000-Mile Horseback Journey into the Old West,” is a chronicle of Will Grant’s modern-day ride retracing the old pony express route. Readers who like American history, horses, and westerns will enjoy being an armchair adventurer in this narrative. Grant spends five months on his ride retracing the mail route from Missouri to California, as opposed to the grueling 10 days that the Express riders endured. His partners on the trail were two horses that he thoughtfully and carefully chose, Chicken Fry and Badger. He vividly describes the landscape, people, and animals he meets, and juxtaposes old West with the modern-day, including the hazards then and now.
If you read and enjoyed Lawrence Anthony’s “The Elephant Whisperer,” and Francoise Malby-Anthony’s bestseller, “An Elephant in My Kitchen,” then you will want to check out, “The Elephants of Thula Thula.” Francoise and her late husband founded the Thula Thula game reserve in 1998 in South Africa. She continues to run and expand the reserve and wildlife rehabilitation center and consequently has more stories of happiness and heartbreak to share about the elephant herd and other animal inhabitants and their caretakers.
“Empress of the Nile: The Daredevil Archaeologist Who Saved Egypt’s Ancient Temples from Destruction,” chronicles the life and accomplishments of a little-known French archaeologist. Lynne Olson brings Christiane Desroches-Noblecourt out of the shadows of history for her courageous efforts that saved many of Egypt’s ancient monuments from ending up underwater when the Aswan High Dam was built. Her childhood fascination with Egyptology culminated in a distinguished career of preserving and keeping many Egyptian treasures from leaving the country. Most notably, she led the international campaign that financed and accomplished the difficult task of dismantling many fragile temples and moving them up the Nile to be rebuilt on higher ground.