- By Rick Bass

The Book of Yaak

  • Title: The Book of Yaak
  • Author: Rick Bass
  • ISBN: 9780395877463
  • Page: 356
  • Format: Paperback
  • The Book of Yaak The Yaak Valley of northwestern Montana is one of the last great wild places in the United States a land of black bears and grizzlies wolves and coyotes bald and golden eagles wolverine lynx mar

    The Yaak Valley of northwestern Montana is one of the last great wild places in the United States, a land of black bears and grizzlies, wolves and coyotes, bald and golden eagles, wolverine, lynx, marten, fisher, elk, and even a handful of humans It is a land of magic, but its magic may not be enough to save it from the forces threatening it now The Yaak does have one trThe Yaak Valley of northwestern Montana is one of the last great wild places in the United States, a land of black bears and grizzlies, wolves and coyotes, bald and golden eagles, wolverine, lynx, marten, fisher, elk, and even a handful of humans It is a land of magic, but its magic may not be enough to save it from the forces threatening it now The Yaak does have one trick up its sleeve, though a writer to give it voice In Winter Rick Bass portrayed the wonder of living in the valley In The Book of Yaak he captures the soul of the valley itself, and he shows how, if places like the Yaak are lost, we too are lost Rick Bass has never been a writer to hold back, but The Book of Yaak is his most passionate book yet, a dramatic narrative of a man fighting to defend the place he loves.

    1 thought on “The Book of Yaak

    1. “You can’t reproduce the wild,” he says, speaking my language. “There is no substitute for the wild.”This book is speaking my language. (Of course it is. Of course.) There’s a part, though, in the essay “Fires,” about the rule of the West and the rule of the world: if it doesn’t rot, it burns. “All over the West, scientists as well as residents are trying to figure out how to apply this most basic truth: the forests have to burn. Suppression only makes forests lean more towar [...]

    2. This may be my favorite Bass. This feels like home, in a way I didn't know a place I've never been could. This feels like the kind of love poem all of our sacred wild places need. This feels like a kick in the pants, a reminder that we each have a voice, and if we aren't using it to advocate for the places and ideas we value most, what's the point?This may become an annual re-read.This should be on your to-read list.This book does not feel dated. If anything, it feels extraordinarily hopeful, in [...]

    3. I first came across Rick Bass in the very readable collection "Big Sky Reader." His essay there about accompanying a friend on a fishing trip with several out-of-state fishermen was an enjoyable glimpse into the lives of folks in the thinly populated woods of the far northwestern corner of Montana. It's a self-sufficient kind of life, where people make do with few amenities in exchange for the beauty and solitude of the mountains and the isolation that comes with many months of snow and cold.Tha [...]

    4. Read this book long ago as I work my way through my shelves and get them up on-line. Enjoy Rick Bass's work--pretty much everything of his I've ever read. While this book is about his love of a special place, Montana's Yaak Valley (his home), he does write a bit about writers and I always love such reflection. Here's a favorite quote from the book that covers both Rick's take on writers, and also his love of the Yaak:---Writing--like the other arts--is not a hobby, but a way of living--a way, in [...]

    5. Best, favorite, most poignant and powerful of all of Rick Bass' books/stories/essay collections I've ever read. This book speaks to me as if it were written yesterday, as if it's perpetually re-writing itself to remain (sadly) ever-relevant. As if it came from my own bones. I took notes on almost every chapter, could hardly put it down; nor could I read it anywhere I couldn't also be writing. This is one of those books I wish everyone in this country could, would, read. (My list of must-reads is [...]

    6. 5 stars? Certainly there were parts that were redundant - the environment and preserving it deserve redundancy. The message should be broadcast to all - the forest service is in the pocket of the logging industry and it is responsible for destroying the last of our natural heritage. This book is dated - written in the late nineties - but the story is the same. Until we value all life, trees to lichen to grizzlies to mayflies, over man made goods, we don't really understand the world and what it [...]

    7. I want to give Bass a 4 star rating because he has a lot of heart. He also lives in my current hometown, Missoula, MT. Read this book for class, and it was really cool to read a novel that references specific things I see unveiling before my very eyes.

    8. I read and write, both to an incessant almost fanatical nature. I learn continuously and this book, this damn book has broken my heart and reaffirmed my disgust for all that is government. I knew briefly that the Forest Service merely existed to allow timber companies to ravage and rape what is mine, what is yourspublic lands. Rick Bass laid out in black and white how big business and politicians, all politicians are stealing everything from us under the guise of bettering communities. They,poli [...]

    9. I initially looked into this book simply because it has an essay titled 'Fires' (I had been looking to find the often-anthologized short story found in 'In The Loyal Mountains'). Like others, I had enjoyed some of his other work, but this left me feeling rather scolded and tired by the time I finished reading. I respect his passion for saving an area of the wilderness that he cares for so deeply--I come from Western Canada myself, and have a fondness for the kind of place he strives to protect-- [...]

    10. Dès les premières pages de The Book of Yaak, il y a cette impression difficile à nommer de toucher quelque chose d'important. Bass navigue entre anecdote, plaidoyer et rencontre magique, colère, désespoir et émerveillement, perdant son lecteur dans la découverte d'une vallée par des chemins aussi variés que passionnants. Écologie, biologie, écosystèmes, art, politique, histoire, communauté, économie On oscille entre la réalité brutale de l'exploitation sauvage et irraisonnée de [...]

    11. I enjoyed the book although some of it was preaching. The problem is that the Yaak Valley and forests all over the US are being destroyed, clear-cut, by timber companies with the help of the US Forest Service. Rick Bass is begging readers to help him save these forests to stop the road building in these areas which is fragmenting them and killing flora and fauna. “we do not have enough art and wilderness. I think that magic is becoming rarer every day--rarer than timber, oil, or steel, and as [...]

    12. A tantalizing tale of the Montana wilderness, mixing elegant description of flora and fauna and the sometimes frustrating but always compelling work of a dedicated preservationist. Rick Bass's prose gorgeously reaffirms the desire deep in all of us for pristine wilderness areas, untouched by corporate moguls and government departments, seemingly in cahoots to destroy some of the last virgin territory still available to us. Although written in the '90s, the lessons of this book still stand today [...]

    13. A moving and insightful book dedicated to a place worth preserving. There are those who might not like personal appeals like this book offers, but I feel as passionately about places special to me as Bass does in this book and can empathize with his quest. I've heard Bass read passages from his other books and he a writer at his core. His words are meaningful and masterfully chosen in almost all cases. He crafts his words into art. This book is less developed as some of his others but it is a me [...]

    14. I loved this book even more than I can describe here. I love reading passionate conservation books and I also LOVE Montana. I live in Iowa but Montana is my favorite place to visit. I agree with this author on so many levels concerning the state of many "wild" places in North America. I also learned a lot from him by reading this book. I had no idea what the US forest Service was doing with all of the logging they are doing (which is selling timber to foreign markets). I also have Rick Bass's bo [...]

    15. A haunting, depressing and beautiful account of one of the last remaining wilderness areas in the US, the Yaak. His experiences within it, his wonder, his fight to save it, big industry and (as always) the US Forest Services attempts to destroy it all for the sake of a short buck. O! How the capitalist system has truly failed us.Bass' essays are lyrical, poetic and paint vivid pictures of how amazing the Yaak valley must be - how amazing nature is.If only more people would discover this, and act [...]

    16. The Book of Yaak by Rick Bass (Houghton Miflin Co. 1996) (599.78681) is author Rick Bass' love letter to his adopted home range in the Yaak Valley of northwestern Montana. It's apparently a relatively unspoiled place and a bit of a Garden of Eden for our times. At the time Bass wrote this volume, the Yaak remained home to such indicator species as the grizzly bear, the woodland caribou, the white sturgeon, and the bull trout among others. His love for this land was plainly written on each page. [...]

    17. I love Rick Bass. I didn't love this book. For the first 30 pages, I appreciated his writing and his passion for an area of wilderness I know. Then, he spend the next 150 pages saying the same things over and over. I kept reading because I wanted to like the book. I wanted to understand his passion. It fit with the Ken Burns National Park Documentary we were watching in the same week, but Ken Burns made a stronger case for wilderness, maybe because he used voices other than his own.

    18. This book had the potential to be great but fell short with the repetitive nature of his message: save the Yaak. If you can get past that, and skim over the numbers and the politics, there are some great stories about the wildness that Bass is so wonderful at telling. I am a fan of Rick Bass. I like his writing style, I love his passion for the Yaak.

    19. as always Rick Bass does a wonderful job describing the world around him. While at times this book drags on with statistics and lamentations on the importance of letter writing and defining the balance between art and activism, as a whole The Book of Yaak is a remarkable effort of balancing nature writing with the immediacy of activism.

    20. Collection of essays about the Yaak valley in Montana. Bass chronicles his fight to save the last little bit of wilderness in this area. It's been logged (clear cut) heavily and recklessly. The mix of futility and hope is manic in these nicely written essays.

    21. I liked Bass' short stories, but the verdict is still out on this. He loses his cool here and petitions the reader directly instead of letting his narrative do the lobbying. A good pep rally speech for the converted, but not something to re-read.

    22. an excellent book on the Yaak Valley and the wildnerness that it encompassese author relates his interaction with the valley itself, and the wild animals he encounters therehe also relates his struggle to keep the valley free from destruction by big logging corporations

    23. I would have supported the writer's cause even without this book which, though it certainly has interesting features, is a weak piece of rhetoric. One good concise essay could have done the work of this book.

    24. Rick writes about what he knows best and that is where he has lived and the people of the Yaak valley of very NW Montana

    25. My least favorite Bass book, though still good. Plenty of great moments but overall disjointed. Perhaps he's too close to the material.

    26. Too preachy. Too in-your-face. Too heavy-handed. Bass should let his poetic turn of phrase take center stage here, not his cynicism and anger.

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