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Anyone who's ever visited the Yosemite National Park will find this book a treasure trove of descriptions, information and evocations of the fabled beauty of this amazing piece of heaven on earth! The Yosemite by John Muir was published in 1912. Born in Scotland, England, this world-famous conservationist was a multi-talented genius. He was a geologist, naturalist, engineer, writer, botanist and a passionate and prolific writer on the preservation of the natural environment. His family migrated to America when he was just a few years old, the third of eight boisterous children. He went on to study chemistry at the University of Wisconsin, and had a moment of epiphany when a friend of his plucked a flower from a tree on campus to explain its botanical structure. An unfortunate accident almost cost him his eyesight and it was while he was confined to a darkened room to convalesce that he rediscovered his passion for nature and beauty. From 1889 onwards, he was associated closely with the creation of the Yosemite National Park which happened a year later. He later founded the Sierra Club to encourage conservation and protection of this magnificent landscape. The book is sheer reading pleasure, especially when it's read aloud. John Muir's language is poetic and lyrical, creating wonderful word pictures of the Yosemite. Muir has acquired almost iconic status in the annals of this great national park and his statue adorns a prominent place there. His love of the outdoors is reflected in his feeling of joy and exhilaration as he describes the towering mountain ranges, the sparkling waterfalls and the shadowy valleys. He was also a keen social scientist who felt that grave injustice had been done to the Native Americans by pushing them further and further away from their hereditary lands. The Yosemite is indeed a great addition to your bookshelf!
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