September 28, 2012

Book Review: “The Green Thoreau” by Henry David Thoreau and edited by Carol Spenard LaRusso

The Green Thoreau by Henry David Thoreau and edited by Carol Spenard LaRusso is a collection of Thoreau’s memorable and inspirational quotes from Walden, and his lesser known essays and books. The release of this collection commemorates the 150th anniversary of Thoreau’s death.

Book Description
America’s first environmentalist on technology, possessions, livelihood, and more.

Henry David Thoreau saw nature as teacher and companion, and many of his philosophies guide the contemporary environmental movement. What Thoreau wrote about simplicity, materialism, technology, and our troubled relationship with nature is perhaps even more relevant to our lives today than it was in the nineteenth century. In these pages, editor Carol Spenard LaRusso presents quotations by Thoreau on nature, technology, livelihood, living, possessions, time, diet and food, and aspiration. At turns passionate, funny, and profound, this collection serves as a compelling introduction – or vivid reminder – of why Thoreau is one of America’s iconoclastic greats.” – The Green Thoreau

My Thoughts
The Green Thoreau features more of Thoreau’s works that are not as well-known as Walden. Some people may not like this, as Walden is his most famous and well-read piece. I thought it was smart and actually quite appropriate. A man as brilliant and ahead of his time as Thoreau, shouldn’t just be defined by his most famous piece of literature. For many of us reading this collection, it is the first time we’ve read some of these selected quotes. What is life without wonder, and discovering new things? I applaud Carol Spenard LaRusso for handpicking the selections as she did for this book.

I was first introduced to Thoreau’s works when I was in the ninth grade. Many of my peers in that English class dreaded it, but I loved it. One of the class projects we did in that class was to pick out quotes from a book of our choice that we read that semester, and then take photographs to illustrate those quotes. I chose Walden. It is one of my favorite things to read, and I still find many useful and inspirational quotes in it.

This collection is excellent. It is a must have for anyone who admires and finds Thoreau’s works inspirational to them. I also think it would make a very good present for someone who is a literature buff or just enjoys good books in general. I highly recommend it.

* Thank you to the publisher of The Green Thoreau, New World Library, for providing me with a copy of this book for review. All opinions expressed are my own.


Anonymous said...

This would be the perfect thing for my sister going to school for a degree in Literature!

Stephanie said...

I love books filled with quotes and this one looks like a gem!