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Book Recommendations
For young readers:
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If Sharks Disappeared
-Lily Williams

Amazon description:

Sharks are introduced as part of a healthy ocean, then the narrator describes the ways in which sharks influence our ecosystem. "In accessible language that doesn't shy away from scientific terminology, the book lays out the path of the trophic cascade that might result from a complete shark extinction. Vibrant seascapes full of movement and a diverse array of underwater flora and fauna contrast sharply with spreads of an ocean choked with algae and devoid of wildlife and plants. Ending on a hopeful note that reaffirms the importance of sharks and downplays their scary reputation."

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Island of the Blue Dolphins
-Scott O'Dell

The story of a 12 year old girl stranded on an island off Southern California, based on the true story of a Nicoleño Native American who spent 18 years alone before a boat came to get her. She learns to take on traditional male tasks such as hunting, builds herself a home with whale bones, and befriends a wild dog. A classic tale of survival.

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I am Jane Goodall
-Brad Meltzer

Amazon description:

"The heroes are depicted as children throughout, telling their life stories in first-person present tense, which keeps the books playful and accessible to young children. And each book ends with a line of encouragement, a direct quote, photos, a timeline, and a source list. This tenth book in the series features Jane Goodall, the scientist and conservationist who is famous for her work with chimpanzees."

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What a Waste: Trash, Recycling, and Protecting Our Planet
-Jess French

Amazon description:

"In this informative book on recycling for children, you will find everything you need to know about our environment. The good, the bad and the incredibly innovative. From pollution and litter to renewable energy and plastic recycling."

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Save the Bees
-Bethany Stahl

Amazon description:

"From exciting and adventurous to educational and captivating, Save the Bees tells the story of three friends working together to make Clover's pollination route easier!

This engaging book teaches about pollination and includes activities after the story is over to interact with the reader directly!

With beautiful and charming illustrations, this is a book adults will love reading over and over again with their kids. Save the Bees heartwarming lesson of environmentalism and conservation that will stay with the reader for a lifetime.

Book extras:

  • Discover hidden elements in a Search and Find game!

  • Build a Bee Home with a step by step guide

  • Find friends hidden in the book from the "Save the Earth" series

  • Read an exclusive page about the real-life adventures of the author and her efforts to Save the Earth

  • Help Cho and Mateo brainstorm ways to Save the Bees!"

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Sloths: Life in the Slow Lane
-Rebecca Cliffe & Suzi Eszterhas

Sloth expert Rebecca Cliffe has teamed up with world renowned wildlife photographer Suzi Eszterhas to produce this stunning coffee-table book which takes readers on an immersive journey through the jungles of South America to discover the secret lives of sloths. The story is illustrated through spectacular imagery capturing some of the most intimate and rarely seen moments, while the narrative reveals some of the latest scientific discoveries and provides fascinating insights into the previously unknown habits of these unusual animals.

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Saving Tally
-Serena Lane Ferrari

Amazon description:

"Tally is a curious little turtle with a talent for getting into trouble.

Her best friend Ara is a wise and strong lobster. The most dangerous part of the ocean is about to shock Tally and Ara and make them realise that their underwater world isn’t always charming. Will they be able to escape the danger?

An engaging book that addresses the issue of plastic pollution and how it impacts our oceans and sea life."

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Save the Arctic
-Bethany Stahl

Amazon description:

"Nanu, a lonely polar bear, searches for dinner. The ice is melting, and the animals are disappearing! During his search, he makes an unlikely friend with Toklo, a silly beluga whale! The friends work together with a native girl, Ahnah, as they figure out how everyone can work together to help "Save the Arctic"!

This time, Bethany Stahl's interactive book immerses children in a fun and unique journey where they can:

-Name the colors of the buildings in the Arctic village!
-Brainstorm ideas on how you can help the Arctic from your home
-Count beluga whales and fish-Learn exciting animal facts about polar bears and beluga whales"

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Exploring Nature: Activity Book for Kids
-Kim Andrews

Amazon description:

"Nature books for kids should get them excited about heading out into the great outdoors. This one encourages them to track, explore, discover and create. Unlike some nature books for kids, the Exploring Nature Activity Book for Kids, is filled with hands-on educational outdoor activities―like crafting bird feeders out of fruit, pressing flowers, creating sundials and so much more."

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The Gift of the Tree
-Alvin Tresselt

Amazon description:

"Award-winning author Alvin Tresselt's classic story about the cycle of life is beautifully illustrated and an excellent resource for families.

The Gift of the Tree reveals the role of an ancient oak tree in the cycle of nature as it dies and returns to the earth, providing nourishment for new life all around it."

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The Great Kapok Tree: A tale of the Amazon Rain Forest
-Lynne Cherry

Amazon description:

"One day, a man exhausts himself trying to chop down a giant kapok tree. While he sleeps, the forest’s residents, including a child from the Yanomamo tribe, whisper in his ear about the importance of trees and how "all living things depend on one another" . . . and it works. Cherry’s lovingly rendered colored pencil and watercolor drawings of all the "wondrous and rare animals" evoke the lush rain forests, as well as stunning world maps bordered by tree porcupines, emerald tree boas, and dozens more fascinating creatures."

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Owen & Mzee: The true story of a remarkable friendship

Amazon description:

"The amazing true story of the orphaned baby hippo and 130-year-old giant turtle whose remarkable friendship touched millions around the world. The inspiring true story of two great friends, a baby hippo named Owen and a 130-yr-old giant tortoise named Mzee (Mm-ZAY). When Owen was stranded after the Dec 2004 tsunami, villagers in Kenya worked tirelessly to rescue him. Then, to everyone's amazement, the orphan hippo and the elderly tortoise adopted each other. Now they are inseparable, swimming, eating, and playing together. Adorable photos e-mailed from friend to friend quickly made them worldwide celebrities. Here is a joyous reminder that in times of trouble, friendship is stronger than the differences that too often pull us apart."

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Dear Children of the Earth: a letter from home
-Schim Schimmel

Amazon description:      

"Dear Children of the Earth begins a remarkable letter from Mother Earth asking for help from children everywhere. She writes to express her love for each and every child and asks for their love and appreciation in return. In her own words, and with all of her heart, Mother Earth enfolds children with love and entrusts them with her protection."

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The Wump World
-Bill Peet

Amazon description:      

"The Pollutians invade the Wump World and turn the green meadows into a concrete jungle."

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Kalinzu
-Jeremy Grimsdell

Amazon description:      

"The buffalo calf Kalinzu knows no nuisances but the red-billed ox-peckers who ride her back looking for ticks--until a trio of hyenas encircles her and Amani, her mother. The herd stampedes to their rescue, scaring the hyenas away. In the rush, Kalinzu is separated from Amani. By following her former nemesis, an ox-pecker, she is led to the herd and her mother. Grimsdell depicts the East African grasslands both realistically and beneficently, with an accuracy tempered by soft color and line. Even the drawing of a buffalo skeleton seems natural, neither morbid nor ominous. Without relying on anthropomorphisms, Grimsdell makes the reader care quite a bit about this little calf in a pickle." 

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A River Ran Wild
-Lynne Cherry

Amazon description:

"From the author of the beloved classic The Great Kapok Tree, A River Ran Wild tells a story of restoration and renewal. Learn how the modern-day descendants of the Nashua Indians and European settlers were able to combat pollution and restore the beauty of the Nashua River in Massachusetts."

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Nature's Yucky! Gross stuff that helps nature work
-Lee Ann Landstrom & Karen Shragg

Amazon description:

"Did you know that honey is really bee barf? That grizzly bears sometimes eat rotting meat? Or that turkey vultures poop on their own feet? Nature's Yucky uses kids' natural fascination with the stinky, the gross, and the icky to help them learn more about wild animals and why critters behave as they do.
Younger children will love having the book read to them, while older children and adults will also enjoy the "Animal Facts" section in the back, which has more in-depth information on the featured animals. Kids of all ages will get a kick out of learning to identify the droppings of various animals by making (and eating!) "scat cookies." Lovely watercolor illustrations balance out the "yuckiness," reminding us that nature is not just disgusting, but beautiful, too."

Advanced reading:
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The Hidden Life of Trees: what they feel, how they communicate- discoveries from a secret world
-Peter Wohlleben
Amazon description:
"In this international bestseller, forester and author Peter Wohlleben convincingly makes the case that, yes, the forest is a social network. He draws on groundbreaking scientific discoveries to describe how trees are like human families: tree parents live together with their children, communicate with them, support them as they grow, share nutrients with those who are sick or struggling, and even warn each other of impending dangers. "
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The Soul of an Octopus: a surprising exploration into the wonder of consciousness
-Sy Montgomery

Amazon description:

"Scientists have only recently accepted the intelligence of dogs, birds, and chimpanzees but now are watching octopuses solve problems and are trying to decipher the meaning of the animal’s color-changing techniques. With her “joyful passion for these intelligent and fascinating creatures” (Library Journal Editors’ Spring Pick), Montgomery chronicles the growing appreciation of this mollusk as she tells a unique love story. By turns funny, entertaining, touching, and profound, The Soul of an Octopus reveals what octopuses can teach us about the meeting of two very different minds."

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Beyond Words: what animals think and feel
-Carl Safina

Amazon description:

"In Beyond Words, readers travel to Amboseli National Park in the threatened landscape of Kenya and witness struggling elephant families work out how to survive poaching and drought, then to Yellowstone National Park to observe wolves sort out the aftermath of one pack's personal tragedy, and finally plunge into the astonishingly peaceful society of killer whales living in the crystalline waters of the Pacific Northwest.
Beyond Words brings forth powerful and illuminating insight into the unique personalities of animals through extraordinary stories of animal joy, grief, jealousy, anger, and love. The similarity between human and nonhuman consciousness, self-awareness, and empathy calls us to re-evaluate how we interact with animals. Wise, passionate, and eye-opening at every turn, Beyond Words is ultimately a graceful examination of humanity's place in the world."

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The Sixth Extinction: An unnatural history
-Elizabeth Kolbert

Amazon description:
"Over the last half-billion years, there have been Five mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on earth suddenly and dramatically contracted. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. This time around, the cataclysm is us. In prose that is at once frank, entertaining, and deeply informed, New Yorker writer Elizabeth Kolbert tells us why and how human beings have altered life on the planet in a way no species has before. Interweaving research in half a dozen disciplines, descriptions of the fascinating species that have already been lost, and the history of extinction as a concept, Kolbert provides a moving and comprehensive account of the disappearances occurring before our very eyes. She shows that the sixth extinction is likely to be mankind's most lasting legacy, compelling us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human."

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Animal Wise: How we know animals think and feel
-Virginia Morell

Amazon description:

"Have you ever wondered what it is like to be a fish? Or a parrot, dolphin, or an elephant?  Do they experience thoughts that are similar to ours, or have feelings of grief and love? These are tough questions, but scientists are answering them. They know that ants teach and rats love to be tickled. They’ve discovered that dogs have thousand-word vocabularies and that birds practice their songs in their sleep. But how do scientists know these things?

Animal Wise takes us on a dazzling odyssey into the inner world of animals and among the pioneering researchers who are leading the way into once-uncharted territory: the animal mind. Morell uses her formidable gifts as a storyteller to transport us to field sites and laboratories around the world, introducing us to animal-cognition scientists and their surprisingly intelligent and sensitive subjects. She explores how this rapidly evolving, controversial field has only recently overturned old notions about why animals behave as they do. In this surprising and moving book, Morell brings the world of nature brilliantly alive in a nuanced, deeply felt appreciation of the human-animal bond."

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Darwin Comes to Town: How the urban jungle drives evolution
-Menno Schilthuizen

Amazon description:

"*Carrion crows in the Japanese city of Sendai have learned to use passing traffic to crack nuts.
*Lizards in Puerto Rico are evolving feet that better grip surfaces like concrete.
*Europe’s urban blackbirds sing at a higher pitch than their rural cousins, to be heardover the din of traffic.
How is this happening?
Menno Schilthuizen is one of a growing number of “urban ecologists” studying how our manmade environments are accelerating and changing the evolution of the animals and plants around us. In Darwin Comes to Town, he takes us around the world for an up-close look at just how stunningly flexible and swift-moving natural selection can be.

Darwin Comes toTown draws on eye-popping examples of adaptation to share a stunning vision of urban evolution in which humans and wildlife co-exist in a unique harmony. It reveals that evolution can happen far more rapidly than Darwin dreamed, while providing a glimmer of hope that our race toward over population might not take the rest of nature down with us."

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Blue Mind: The surprising science that shows how being near, in, on, or under water can make you happier, healthier, more connected, and better at what you do.
=Wallace Nichols

Why are we drawn to the ocean each summer? Why does being near water set our minds and bodies at ease? In BLUE MIND, Wallace J. Nichols revolutionizes how we think about these questions, revealing the remarkable truth about the benefits of being in, on, under, or simply near water. Combining cutting-edge neuroscience with compelling personal stories from top athletes, leading scientists, military veterans, and gifted artists, he shows how proximity to water can improve performance, increase calm, diminish anxiety, and increase professional success.

BLUE MIND not only illustrates the crucial importance of our connection to water-it provides a paradigm shifting "blueprint" for a better life on this Blue Marble we call home.

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