The Utne Weeder, Jan/Feb 2001

Our staff's selection of good reads

| January/February 2001 Issue

Coming Out of the Woods: The Solitary Life of a Maverick Naturalist by Wallace Kaufman (Perseus, $26). Kaufman’s journey from ’60s communard to radical "anti-environmentalist" betrays both a powerful respect for all things wild and a keen understanding of the complexity of the simple life. —Craig Cox

The Zine Yearbook Volume 4 (Become the Media, $7). Raggedy, opinionated, and optimistic, this annual selection of excerpts from the do-it-yourself micropress covers topics from sex industry unionization and punk rock parents to gentrification and banjo-making. —Chris Dodge

Journal 1935–1944: The Fascist Years by Mihail Sebastian (Ivan R. Dee, $36). Romanian Jewish author and playwright Mihail Sebastian details, in a most profound and personal way, the horrors of anti-Semitism through the dawn and dusk of World War II. —Nicole Duclos

The Regional City: Planning for the End of Sprawl by Peter Calthorpe and William Fulton (Island Press, $35). Calthorpe, one of the founding lights of the New Urbanism, and Fulton, a veteran writer on urban affairs, offer a vision of America’s metropolitan regions as unified communities that can guide us toward untangling our environmental and social problems. —Jay Walljasper

Stirring the Mud: On Swamps, Bogs and Human Imagination by Barbara Hurd (Beacon, $23). Hurd’s poetic inquiry into the life and margins of marshy terrain takes us on a magic-filled metaphorical mystery tour of human desire. —Karen Olson

The! Greatest! Of! Marlys! by Lynda Barry (Sasquatch, $15.95). Hilarious, loving, and painfully accurate, Barry’s comics continue to feature some of the best writing about childhood and adolescence. And who better to speak the truth than the irrepressible Marlys? —Andy Steiner

The Times of Their Lives: Life, Love and Death in Plymouth Colony by James and Patricia Deetz (W.H. Freeman, $24.95). This meticulous exploration of an early New World settlement suggests that the reality of Plymouth Colony is more fascinating than the myth. —Mark Odegard