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Comment: Publisher: Skyhorse Pub Co Inc
Date of Publication: 2007
Binding: softcover
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Condition: As New
Description: 1602391602 Appears unread and unused. Tight, clean and square. As new condition.
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Mushrooming without Fear: The Beginner's Guide to Collecting Safe and Delicious Mushrooms Paperback – October 17, 2007


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Mushrooming without Fear: The Beginner's Guide to Collecting Safe and Delicious Mushrooms + National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Mushrooms (National Audubon Society Field Guides)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Skyhorse Publishing (October 17, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1602391602
  • ISBN-13: 978-1602391604
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #12,568 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Alexander Schwab grew up in Switzerland and gained a master’s degree in philosophy and history at Aberdeen University. He now lives in the beautiful Emmental region of Switzerland and fills the gaps between fishing trips by working as a management consultant. His hobbies include mushrooming, cooking, exploring the countryside, and reading poetry. He is the author of Mushrooming without Fear, Dear Jim: Reflections on the Beauty of Angling, and Hook, Line, and Thinker.

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Customer Reviews

With all the pictures, this book is an easy read.
Technophile
Excellent book to learn more about wild mushroom picking without making dangerous mistakes.
Benjamin Ruiter
This book explained everything I wanted to know about mushrooming.
jerryo

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

68 of 68 people found the following review helpful By Richard R. Powell on January 2, 2010
Format: Paperback
This book has some shortcomings. It doesn't cover many varieties of mushrooms, and it is ultra-conservative in the rules for collection. Still, for the beginner who wants to get out there and start hunting, this is the best book to start with.

Mushrooms Covered:

Cep or King Bolete
Red Cracked Bolete
Hen of the Woods
Larch Bolete
Bay Bolete
Birch Bolete
Chanterelle
Trumpet (Winter) Chanterelle
Hedgehog
Common Puffballs
Horn of Plenty
Cauliflower

Yep, that is the whole list. The good news is that these are all fairly common mushrooms, and some of the notes on each are really illuminating. For example there are tons of Boletes in the Pacific Northwest where I do my hunting, and telling them apart can be a real head scratcher. The photos and description of the white network on the stem of the King is very clear and makes identification almost foolproof.

Also, the section about ridges vs gills was helpful. Chanterelles have ridges and not gills, and since most hunters would love to bag some Chanterelles, this clear distinction is really helpful. The first time I was out with a guide we were looking for Chanterelles and I was told to look for ridges rather than gills. It sounds like a no-brainer when you say it, but in the field, when you are first starting out, it can actually get confusing. The three pages in this book that explain ridges are succinct and clear and about all you need to understand the distinction.

Maybe Alexander Schwab would consider doing a Mushrooming Without Fear 2 that would cover the same number of mushrooms this book does, but taking on some more challenging ones. My request would be for fairy Ring Mushrooms, Pine Mushrooms (White Matsutake), Aspen Bolete, Shaggy Mane, Oyster, and the Blewit.
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36 of 37 people found the following review helpful By C. Walker on November 10, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was for the most beginning of beginners. They say to stay away from any gilled mushrooms (I love gilled mushrooms). My other criticism is that the book doesn't mention morel mushrooms which are not a gilled mushroom and in my top 10 of all the most delicious of the fungi and not that difficult to id.
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50 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on March 14, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I never write reviews although I have several books on mushrooming including a couple by Micheal Kuo which I also like very well.But I've decided that this book warrants my praise . It's a great little book with great color pictures and checklist guides for picking about 12 of the most popular varieties with the exception of Morels .
This book has taken away my fears about mushrooming and has even encouraged me and made me anxious to get started .
If after reading and following the guides in the book to the letter you happen to pick a poisonous variety,then you probably aren't following instructions.
I feel this book is almost a foolproof in it's simplicity you'll not be burdened with a lot of scientific jargain .
If you were ever curious about picking wild mushrooms but were afraid then BUY THIS BOOK
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Technophile on October 16, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There are, indeed, hundreds of color pictures in this book (a must for field guides, in my opinion), and great step-by-step instructions. However, do not be misled... this is strongly oriented toward helping mushrooming beginners to get started. Only twelve (not 700+) types of mushrooms are identified, and while it seems to be a good selection I found myself wanting to be able to identify other mushrooms I've found, good or bad.

With all the pictures, this book is an easy read. I finished it in about an hour. The pictures and checklists are well organized.

In summary, I love the book and recommend it as a beginning mushrooming guide -- with caveats. It does a great (maybe overzealous) job of eliminating riskier candidates. However, even with the small number of mushrooms covered, it may be slightly oversimplified in spots. It would be discouraging to start into this hobby and not be able to find any of these twelve varieties, yet pass by other excellent candidates. Then again, you have to start somewhere...
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By R. A. Williams on November 10, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book has phenomenal pictures of the mushrooms. Unfortunately that's all it has going for it.

Here, 128 pages are devoted to only 12 mushroom species. (Not mushroom "types" as is suggested on the rear cover, these are twelve particular species). Surprisingly little space is devoted to content. Consider:

- 17 pages are title sheets with section titles, the table of contents, and a blank filler page
- 13 pages are devoted to explanation of, and multiple re-hashings, of 8 basic rules of collecting. One page, which begins with the words "Always remember..." is repeated FIVE TIMES. That's five copies of the same one-page reminder, which has also been thoroughly rehashed several times before.

The margins are extremely wide and the text is large. The photographs, while impressive, are sometimes accompanied by only one or two sentences per page. Some photographs have no text at all, and a few are repeated at different places in the book either by direct repetition or by Photoshop cropping or bunching.

Critical identification techniques (such as spore printing) are completely absent from this book. Identification instructions are so vague as to be almost impossible to use effectively. Although the photographs are outstanding, some of them are repeated to fill space. Mushrooms are seldom shown in the button stage.

Shockingly, the poisonous look-alikes are not actually shown. In some cases, key information about poisonous look-alikes is missing. For example, the Jack O' Lantern mushroom (which is identified in SOME field guides as having gills but which can often resemble the false gills or "ridges" of a chanterelle) is found almost exclusively on rotting wood.
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