About this item

We live in a world of seeds. From our morning toast to the cotton in our clothes, they are quite literally the stuff and staff of life, supporting diets, economies, and civilizations around the globe. Just as the search for nutmeg and the humble peppercorn drove the Age of Discovery, so did coffee beans help fuel the Enlightenment, and cottonseed help spark the Industrial Revolution. And from the Fall of Rome to the Arab Spring, the fate of nations continues to hinge on the seeds of a Middle Eastern grass known as wheat.In nature and in culture, seeds are fundamental - objects of beauty, evolutionary wonder, and simple fascination. How many times has a child dropped the winged pip of a maple, marveling as it spirals its way down to the ground, or relished the way a gust of wind(or a stout breath) can send a dandelion's feathery flotilla skyward? Yet despite their importance, seeds are often seen as a commonplace, their extraordinary natural and human histories overlooked.



About the Author

Thor Hanson

Dr. Thor Hanson is a Guggenheim Fellow, a Switzer Environmental Fellow, and an award winning author and biologist. His book FEATHERS won the John Burroughs Medal and was nominated for the Samuel Johnson Prize. It also won the 2012 AAAS/Subaru SB&F Prize, as well as a Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association Award. His first book, THE IMPENETRABLE FOREST, received the 2008 USA Book News Award for nature writing. Hanson's most recent book is THE TRIUMPH OF SEEDS. He lives with his wife and son on an island in the Pacific Northwest. Visit his website at www.thorhanson.net. (Author photo by Kathleen Ballard Photography.)



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