From Library Journal
Presented here are two books that address the healing qualities of herbs. The New Age Herbalist is an attempt to "form a bridge between orthodox medicine and herbalism . . . ." The authors believe that no herbalists should regard their treatment as beyond scientific explanation and analysis . . . ." The attractive book has many black-and-white drawings and color photos which clearly show the various parts of each herb described. The "glossary" of herbs is designed to be used with chapters on nutrition, healing, and body and home care; it also has a section on growing herbs. The authors provide basic psychological information and practical advice on using herbs, and include recipes for both foods and household preparations. A good, comprehensive work with sound advice on what conditions are treatable herbally, and when to obtain traditional medical treatment. Tierra, author of The Way of Herbs ( LJ 10/1/80), has compiled an impressive work that covers the philosophies of traditional Eastern herbal medicine along with describing the herbs and their uses. He compares these systems to Western herbal traditions, aiming at a synthesis to create a "planetary" herbalism. Tierra's basic assumptions, that because the Eastern systems have existed for centuries, they must work, and that "all plants must have potential therapeutic application," are unproven and probably unprovable. He sees herbalism as a religion of nature, intuitive rather than precise and scientific. The book may be of interest to Eastern herbalism researchers, but not for the practical herbalist, as the information is often contradictory or of marginal use.- Katharine Galloway Gartska, Intergraph Corp., Huntsville, Ala.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.