A unique perspective that offers immense hope and direction for humanity in the face of climate change.

GUARDIANS OF THE TREES

A JOURNEY OF HOPE THROUGH HEALING THE PLANET

The inspiring story of the creation of an award-winning model for reversing rainforest loss and improving human well-being.

In 1993, as an undergraduate biology major, Webb traveled to Indonesia to study the dispersal of seeds by orangutans in the mountains of Gunung Palung National Park. She immediately fell in love with the land, the animals, and the people. After hearing her “least favorite sound: the whine of a chain saw in the far distance,” she learned that logging was one of the few ways the locals could make money to pay for health care. Watching the forests of Borneo disappearing, she “felt like my heart was being ripped out.” With the conviction that public health and the planet’s health are intrinsically intertwined, Webb returned to Indonesia after medical school and co-founded Alam Sehat Lestari (“healthy nature everlasting”). The organization initiated a reforestation program and a clinic to provide affordable health care to the community. Webb also founded Health in Harmony, an international nonprofit dedicated to fighting climate change by preventing the destruction of rainforests. In a compelling narrative, the author shares the details of her journey and the cultural nuances of the region. At the heart of her mission is the concept of “radical listening.” By actively engaging the community while building her program, she was able to create real and sustainable results. Webb dedicated herself wholeheartedly to her organizations, working long hours and making numerous sacrifices. She candidly shares the personal and physical struggles she endured, including a box jellyfish sting that nearly killed her. Having already created the framework for her program, Webb decided to expand her work beyond Borneo. “The human species may be deeply flawed,” she writes, “but we also have the capacity for beauty, transcendence, and unexpectedly rapid change.” Webb’s vision is notable for its focus on truly listening to community members, not just leaders.

A unique perspective that offers immense hope and direction for humanity in the face of climate change.

Pub Date: Sept. 28, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-250-75138-6

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Flatiron Books

Review Posted Online: July 20, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2021

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A conversational, pleasurable look into McConaughey’s life and thought.

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GREENLIGHTS

All right, all right, all right: The affable, laconic actor delivers a combination of memoir and self-help book.

“This is an approach book,” writes McConaughey, adding that it contains “philosophies that can be objectively understood, and if you choose, subjectively adopted, by either changing your reality, or changing how you see it. This is a playbook, based on adventures in my life.” Some of those philosophies come in the form of apothegms: “When you can design your own weather, blow in the breeze”; “Simplify, focus, conserve to liberate.” Others come in the form of sometimes rambling stories that never take the shortest route from point A to point B, as when he recounts a dream-spurred, challenging visit to the Malian musician Ali Farka Touré, who offered a significant lesson in how disagreement can be expressed politely and without rancor. Fans of McConaughey will enjoy his memories—which line up squarely with other accounts in Melissa Maerz’s recent oral history, Alright, Alright, Alright—of his debut in Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused, to which he contributed not just that signature phrase, but also a kind of too-cool-for-school hipness that dissolves a bit upon realizing that he’s an older guy on the prowl for teenage girls. McConaughey’s prep to settle into the role of Wooderson involved inhabiting the mind of a dude who digs cars, rock ’n’ roll, and “chicks,” and he ran with it, reminding readers that the film originally had only three scripted scenes for his character. The lesson: “Do one thing well, then another. Once, then once more.” It’s clear that the author is a thoughtful man, even an intellectual of sorts, though without the earnestness of Ethan Hawke or James Franco. Though some of the sentiments are greeting card–ish, this book is entertaining and full of good lessons.

A conversational, pleasurable look into McConaughey’s life and thought.

Pub Date: Oct. 20, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-13913-4

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Crown

Review Posted Online: Oct. 27, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2020

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The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

NIGHT

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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