My wife and I read this book aloud to each other. It was almost impossible to put down once we started. It represents something for every memeber of the family I believe, but especially anyone intersted in biolgical research, the out of doors, and bears, yet the book is written as an adventure story.
Grizzly Heart is the best book written on grizzly bears. The book chronicles Charlie Russell's quest to prove that human-bear peaceful coexistence is possible. Russell moves to remote Siberia to live with bears and ends up adopting orphaned cubs and raising them in the wild. Russell is an amazing, gifted writer and the story is compelling and exciting. Russell's work with animals is groundbreaking and his writing shares with the world that grizzly bears are not the demonized monsters they have been turned into through popular culture. Russell is one of few people involved with grizzly bears who understands how power and culture work to keep dominant power structures (such as the hunting establishment) in place. His story is not only a page turner but will open your eyes to how animals can be so completely misunderstood. If you like nature narratives or are interested in learning about bears this book is a must read. My husband has read it three times!
It is well written with lots of information but I still haven't finished it! I simply lost interest, guess its not my kind of book. It's too "text book" like for me. I like books with more heart and soul.
I first saw Charlie Russell's work with grizzly bears in the BBC documentary, The Bear Man of Kamchatka. Unfortunately, this documentary doesn't seem to be available in North America. Born and raised in grizzly country near Twin Butte, Alberta, his father used to guide wilderness tours for weeks at a time. Mr. Russell joined his father's business as a guide and outfitter, but he always wanted to study grizzlies. He decided to study the grizzlies of remote Kamchatka Peninsula because they had no real prior exposure to humans. Not only is Mr. Russell a diligent self-taught, brilliant and compassionate biologist, he has a wonderful manner of writing about his experiences. Through his detailed writing, you are 'right there with him' as he travels to Kamchatka, prepares a site for his cabin and meets grizzy bears who are his study subjects. There is an empathetic cross-species communication between Mr. Russell and the bears, which is relayed well in this book, but you would be amazed to see how this works in the documentary. Hopefully, the documentary will be made available in North America. Wonderful book. READ IT! See different grizzly bears hunting for salmon with Mr. Russell, and watch as they sit beside him on land, or wade into streams with him.