Walden

This 1966 illustrated edition of Thoreau’s Walden, first published in 1854, is a truly lovely version of this iconic Transcendentalist work. The black and white illustrations by Aldren Watson are bordered in a golden yellow, complimenting the simple red and gold hardcover.  (There’s also a green and gold hardcover version.)

The Mushroom Book

This 1905 first edition of the Nature Library Mushroom Book by Nina Marshall, purchased at the Maine Bookhouse in Oxford, ME, is one of my favorite books in my collection. As an amateur forager, mushrooms have befuddled my imagination with their mysterious and unusual characteristics. Michael Pollan captures their charm in the “Gathering: The Fungi” chapter of…

Indian Tales

Indian Tales, illustrated and written by Spanish writer Jaime de Angulo, is a collection of indigenous American folk tales and animal mythology Angulo learned while living among the Pit River Indians of California. This 1953 first edition was purchased at the Maine Bookhouse in Oxford, ME.

The Call of the Wild

The Call of the Wild by Jack London was published in 1903 to critical acclaim. It’s a prime example of the American pastoral: the domesticated protagonist Buck rejects modernity and chooses primitive life in the wilderness. An action-adventure “survival of the fittest” animal parable, Call of the Wild combines popular literary genres while writing a beautiful, persuasive…

Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson

This well-loved copy of the Collected Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson in One Volume was purchased at Village Antiques & Collectibles in Successunna, NJ. I can’t find a publishing date anywhere on the book, but it’s likely Walter J. Black Inc.’s 1925 edition. Emerson’s classic essays Nature (1836) and The American Scholar (1837) encouraged an explosion of uniquely American literature…

Baree, Son of Kazan

This is a first edition of Baree, Son of Kazan by James Oliver Curwood, published in 1917 and the sequel to Kazan (1914). Curwood was an avid conservationist and spent long periods of time living in the Canadian wilderness, which inspired him to set his action-adventure stories in nature. He writes in the preface that he sets…