Author(s): WELLAND MICHAEL
Lands of extremes, contrasts and constant change, deserts cover a quarter of our planet's land area and are home to some half a billion people. Though generally seen as arid and infertile, deserts have been the birthplaces of critical evolutionary adaptations, civilizations, ideologies and agricultural and social progress. Deserts play active roles in the continued evolution of our climate and societies, demanding that we think seriously about these barren lands and their future. From scorching seas of sand to glacial polar expanses, The Desert: Lands of Lost Borders relates the tales, truths, folklore and facts of the desert in an analysis that is at once informative and surprising.
Review: "A rich, scholarly, beautifully crafted and illustrated account of deserts in all their diversity: not just their geology and wildlife, but also the human cultures that have made wilderness their home, and the art and poetry that has been inspired by arid remoteness. We learn of those who have treated deserts wisely and with respect, and those who have placed human vanity above regard for nature. Welland's grasp of an impressive range of research never falters."--Richard Fortey FRS, author of The Earth: An Intimate History