A Wilder Time


208 pages


List Price US $17.99
ISBN: 9781942658351

Trade Paper

List Price US $17.99
ISBN: 9781942658344

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“Very few people have spent as much time as William E. Glassley in such deep wilderness. So it would behoove us to pay attention even if he had not brought back such a fascinating, lovely, and useful set of observations. This is a remarkable book.”

Bill McKibben, author of The End of Nature and Oil and Honey

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“While conveying the geological hypotheses, techniques of data collection, and adventures of his expeditions to Greenland with his two Danish colleagues, Glassley also brings startling sensory precision to his descriptions. The velvety feeling of moss, the taste of reindeer lichen, the alternating rhythms of terror and fluidity in schools of fish through which a predatory sculpin cruises—such experiences bring what might have seemed a stark world of rock and ice alive. This delicacy of perception is the vehicle through which not only the scientific quest but also the profound mystery of our living Earth saturates this memorable book.”

John Elder, coeditor of The Norton Book of Nature Writing and author of Picking Up the Flute

Greenland, one of the last truly wild places, contains a treasure trove of information on Earth’s early history embedded in its pristine landscape. Over numerous seasons, William E. Glassley and two fellow geologists traveled there to collect samples and observe rock formations for evidence to prove a contested theory that plate tectonics, the movement of Earth’s crust over its molten core, is a much more ancient process than some believed. As their research drove the scientists ever farther into regions barely explored by humans for millennia—if ever—Glassley encountered wondrous creatures and natural phenomena that gave him unexpected insight into the origins of myth, the virtues and boundaries of science, and the importance of seeking the wilderness within.

An invitation to experience a breathtaking place and the fascinating science behind its creation, A Wilder Time is nature writing at its best.

Excerpt from A Wilder Time