Summer World

Bees are buzzing, plants are growing—it's summer!

Summer World: A Season of Bounty

Heinrich, Bernd. Ecco, 2009
253p, 9780060742171 $26.99

Summer World: A Season of Bounty book cover

Heinrich (emer., biology, Univ. of Vermont), a prolific author of natural history books (e.g., Winter World, 2003; The Trees in My Forest, CH, Apr’98, 35-4488; The Thermal Warriors, CH, Mar’97, 34-3859), has written an engaging, highly readable account of nature in New England. In his introduction and 23 chapters, he records many observations of plants and wildlife made from March to October 2006. His goal is to explore the “ingenuity of life” through the interaction of various species, showing the many changes they underwent during that season. Heinrich dwells on the interdependency between the plants and the moving creatures and their habitats, and frames it in light of climate warming. He details how the trees, insects, amphibians, birds, and mammals transitioned from a dramatic winter—with more snow than any other time in the previous century—through spring and a hot summer to a warmer-than-usual autumn. Heinrich’s text is personalized by 40 of his own green-and-white drawings, with more that embellish his chapter headings. The text is also printed in green, which may challenge the visually impaired. Eight pages offer additional drawings in full color.

Summing Up: Highly recommended. Lower- and upper-division undergraduates and general readers.
Reviewer: K. B. Sterling, Pace University
Subject: Science & Technology – Biology
Choice Issue: Jun 2010