Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Summer Reading 2018: Desert Solitaire

All the book choices for Summer Reading 2018. Have questions? Ask Sarah, Katie or Hilda

Here's why Greg suggests Desert Solitaire...

We all need to value and defend the Wilderness. Beautiful writing, strong arguments, and radical activism might be just the thing Earth and its human inhabitants need.

About the book

Desert Solitaire

by Edward Abbey

Hailed by The New York Times as “a passionately felt, deeply poetic book,” the moving autobiographical work of Edward Abbey, considered the Thoreau of the American West, and his passion for the southwestern wilderness. 
Desert Solitaire is a collection of vignettes about life in the wilderness and the nature of the desert itself by park ranger and conservationist, Edward Abbey. The book details the unique adventures and conflicts the author faces, from dealing with the damage caused by development of the land or excessive tourism, to discovering a dead body. However Desert Solitaire is not just a collection of one man’s stories, the book is also a philosophical memoir, full of Abbey’s reflections on the desert as a paradox, at once beautiful and liberating, but also isolating and cruel. Often compared to Thoreau’s WaldenDesert Solitaire is a powerful discussion of life’s mysteries set against the stirring backdrop of the American southwestern wilderness. --Simon & Schuster

The Curious Story of Edward Abbey

About the reader

 Greg Monfils, History

Greg previously recommended:

  • The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
  • The Boys of Summer by Roger Kahn
  • The Tree by John Fowles
  • Lives of a Cell by Lewis Thomas
  • Directed by Desire by June Jordan
  • A Book of Luminous Things: an International Anthology of Poetry edited by Czeslaw Milosz​