When his marriage headed south, environmentalist Thomson, a senior editor of NPR's Living on Earth, headed north to Russia's Lake Baikal"the largest freshwater lake on Earth"a place of extreme beauty, unexplored marine wonders, and a unique "self-cleansing" ecosystem. More travel journal and personal exploration than hard scientific text, Thomson's account nevertheless presents his findings and his journey in a way that keeps both lay reader and scientist interested and entertained. Exploring the big picture of Baikal's impact on the world (it holds one-fifth of the world's liquid fresh water) and on the people who live along its shores, Thomson also permitted himself during the journey to explore the effects of his own life on those immediately around him and on those he met during his travels. Recommended for public libraries and undergraduate institutions with environmental history disciplines.
–Susan Brazer, Salisbury Univ. Lib., MD
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