The new book from the author of celebrated books on the Great Lakes
If you have been enchanted by Jerry Dennis's earlier work on sailing the Great Lakes, canoeing, angling, and the natural wonders of water and sky—or you have not yet been lucky enough to enjoy his engaging prose—you will want to immerse yourself in his powerful and insightful new book on winter in Great Lakes country.
Grounded by a knee injury, Dennis learns to live at a slower pace while staying in houses ranging from a log cabin on Lake Superior's Keweenaw Peninsula to a $20 million mansion on the northern shore of Lake Michigan. While walking on beaches and exploring nearby woods and villages, he muses on the nature of time, weather, waves, agates, books, words for snow and ice, our complex relationship with nature, and much more.
From the introduction: "I wanted to present a true picture of a complex region, part of my continuing project to learn at least one place on earth reasonably well, and trusted that it would appear gradually and accumulatively—and not as a conventional portrait, but as a mosaic that included the sounds and scents and textures of the place and some of the plants, animals, and its inhabitants. Bolstered by the notion that a book is a journey that author and reader walk together, I would search for promising trails and follow them as far as my reconstructed knee would allow."
"Our country is lucky to have Jerry Dennis. A conservationist with the soul of a poet whose beat is Wild Michigan, Dennis is a kindred spirit of Aldo Leopold and Sigurd Olson. The Windward Shore—his newest effort—is a beautifully written and elegiac memoir of outdoor discovery. Highly recommended!"
—Douglas Brinkley, author of The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America
"In prose as clear as the lines in a Dürer etching, Jerry Dennis maps his home ground, which ranges outward from the back door of his farmhouse to encompass the region of vast inland seas at the heart of our continent. Along the way, inspired by the company of water in all its guises—ice, snow, frost, clouds, rain, shore-lapping waves—he meditates on the ancient questions about mind and matter, time and attention, wildness and wonder. As in the best American nature writing—a tradition that Dennis knows well—here the place and the explorer come together in brilliant conversation."
—Scott Russell Sanders, author of A Conservationist Manifesto
"Come for a journey; stay for an awakening. Jerry Dennis loves the Great Lakes, the swell of every wave, the curve of every rock. He wants you to love them too before our collective trashing of them wipes out all traces of their original character. Through his eyes, you will treasure the hidden secrets that reveal themselves only to those who linger and long. Elegant and sad at the same time, The Windward Shore is a love song for the Great Lakes and a gentle call to action to save them."
—Maude Barlowe, author of Blue Covenant: The Global Water Crisis and the Coming Battle for the Right to Water
"The Windward Shore is a provoking work meant to accompany slow, steaming cups of coffee rather than an extra hot grande-on-the-go. It's not a wild page-turner that blows through to the end, but a work seasoned to mull over, enjoy, and consider long after you close the cover."
—Night Light Revue
"A truly wonderful read by a favorite author."
—Dave Richey Outdoors
"The Windward Shore has inspired profound reflections from my environmental studies, history, and geography students. While other authors present Great Lakes issues broadly, Jerry Dennis helps his readers pause 'in place.' The Windward Shore reveals the importance of experiential knowledge in the care and protection of our inland seas."
—Lynne Heasley, Western Michigan University, author of A Thousand Pieces of Paradise: Landscape and Property in the Kickapoo Valley
Copyright © 2011, University of Michigan. All rights reserved.
Watch: Book Trailer | 1/3/2012
Read: Interview with the author Night Light Revue | 6/1/2011
Read: Dog Ears Books | 9/3/2011
Read: Interview with the author Jumping the Candlestick | 9/26/2011
Read: Review Great Lakes Echo | 9/30/2011
Read: Review Northern Express Weekly | 10/03/11
Read: Review CMU Public Radio | 10/10/2011
Read: Review Hungry For Good Books? | 10/24/2011
Listen: Interview Minnesota Public Radio | 12/2/2011
Our edition is available in Canada, United StatesClose