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Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Some visual wear to the edges and corners. Signed by the author. Binding tight. Pages clean and unmarked.
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Shadow Mountain: A Memoir of Wolves, a Woman, and the Wild Paperback – January 6, 2004

4.5 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

In the 1990s, Yellowstone National Park still had every plant and animal species that was present when European settlers first reached North America except for one--the wolf. And that one was a keystone species, a predator whose absence had a significant effect on the workings of the ecosystem. As an undergraduate student, Askins worked at Indiana's Wolf Park on a study of captive wolves and fell in love with an orphaned wolf pup. The plight of this little wolf inspired her to form the Wolf Fund, an organization whose only goal was to return the wolf to Yellowstone. The story of how this goal was finally reached, despite the enmity of ranchers, death threats, illegal killing of the newly released wolves, and the political machinations of western (and some eastern) politicians, is interwoven with meditations on the meaning of wilderness and our connection with nature. Working in the story of her life, the author provides a personal touch that draws the reader in. This celebration of wolves will be popular in all collections. Nancy Bent
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“The wolves of North America have their Jane Goodall, and her name is Renée Askins…. An eloquent plea for nature unrestrained.” —Outside Magazine

“Delightful…fun to read. The seamless way Askins weaves the natural world into her narrative brings to mind Terry Tempest Williams’s memoir Refuge.” —The New York Times Book Review

“Demonstrates the kind of deep natural wisdom and sense of awe at the wild that has distinguished writers like Edwin Muir, Annie Dillard, and Aldo Leopold….Wonderfully poignant.”—BookPage

“Renée Askins is a modern-day hero, a woman of tremendous courage and creativity. . . . Never have we needed these words more. This book is a quiet revolution.” –Terry Tempest Williams, author of Refuge and Leap
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Anchor; 1st, First Edition edition (January 6, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385482264
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385482264
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.7 x 7.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #414,896 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Rob Hardy HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on August 6, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Wolves were eliminated from Yellowstone National Park by 1926. They were the only creatures banished from the preserve, because humans unrealistically feared them and the cattle damage they might do. As Americans became aware of what ecology was, more were able to accept that the missing wolves ought to be restored to the nature preserve, for they should have been preserved along with all the other creatures. Renée Askins would certainly not claim that she was the one to effect their restoration into Yellowstone, but she certainly deserves much of the credit. Her lovely memoir, _Shadow Mountain: A Memoir of Wolves, a Woman, and the Wild_ (Doubleday) not only tells about her involvement in this huge project, but also is her autobiography, taking in her upbringing, her lovers, and in many pages, her dogs. It is sweet and compelling reading.
In 1980, Askins was a college student working at a wolf research facility in Indiana. She had a wolf pup thrust upon her to raise, and although she had plenty of experience with wild and domestic animals before, this was "the first time I truly began to face and fathom the capacity of another species." When the pup was taken from her, she was heartbroken. She sobbed, and (this is something she does quite a bit throughout the book), she howled. And she was answered by the pack, which "one by one, called out in the long, graceful wail that is the code of their species. Their own had been taken. I had no doubt they knew." (Also throughout the book is this sort of mystical anthropomorphic speculation, which may put some readers off, but which has served the author well.) In 1986, she founded the Wolf Fund. Returning wolves to Yellowstone was its one and only purpose.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Just before the start of Chapter one in the book Shadow Mountain is the Quote from Gandhi "Whatever you do will be insignificant and it is very important that you do it". Ghandi also once wrote that you can judge people by the way they treat their animals. Renee Askins founded the Wolf Fund in 1986 for the purpose of reintroducing the wolf into Yellowstone National Park. Renee Askins is a fine human being, one who, like Dian Fossey, has devoted herself to one endangered species and from her efforts has found ground breaking and hopefully, long lasting success. Shadow Mountain is a wonderful book filled with emotion and adventure that will make you laugh, make you angry, and make you cry, but most of all is will make you pleased about the way you treat your animals.
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Format: Hardcover
Askins has crafted a compelling story about examining our human relationship with the natural world. Ostensibly, the book describes the formation of the Wolf Fund, her single issue, streamlined, strategic environmental organization aimed at garnering grass roots support and applying political pressure to achieve the reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone National Park. And yet it is about so much more. She writes with candor and wit, wandering back and forth in time, highlighting the trail, effectively illustrating serendipitous twists of fate that ultimately influence her role in the attainment of this greater goal. It's her story, and yet, like any good writing, there is something universal here. Digging at the roots of her own motivation, she uncovers a philosophy for life. Askins herds the reader along with a mixture of dogged determination and poetic passion, feeding us cookies of wisdom along the way, plenty of food for thought. I hope we hear her howl again.
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Format: Hardcover
I originally got this book out of the library, in part of planning a trip to Yellowstone and a desire to see its wolves. After only a few pages, I realized I was reading a book that was about so much more than wolves -- Ms. Askins writes brilliantly about conservation ethics, wildness, the politics of animal reintroductions, and living a commitment. The book was so good that I rushed out to buy my own copy, in part so I could underline all of the 'nuggets' of wisdom she serves up. This is a woman that I hope someday my daughter can meet - for she is a living example of what someone with vision, chutzpah, a good education, and perserverance can accomplish.
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Format: Hardcover
Renee Askins has written something (somewhat tangentially), about wolves--that truly translates into every other aspect of life--she's a brilliant and beautiful genius, and it will probably be ages before we realize her wisdom. For the time being, I am content to wander through her metaphors and images, just hoping that I discover their worth.
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Format: Hardcover
Renee Askins is a lyrical writer who tells her story beautifully. It's not about the wolves and it's not about Yellowstone; it's about passion and heartbreak and staying on course. It made me laugh, shake my head, and cry. And long after the last page of the book, her bright images peer from behind trees and peek around corners.
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Format: Paperback
I've always admired people like Renee Askins - people with perseverance, a strong will, and the strength to rise above the crowd and do what they want done. I am so glad that she has written a book about her experience helping wolves return to Yellowstone.

The text flows beautifully, written in a style the young adult-adult population (Kids just won't understand it) will appreciate, understand, and relate to. The book is not so much about wolves but about nature itself.

Now, you're probably wondering when I'm going to say what I mean by calling this review 'This book will change your life.' We'll, you're about to find out.

The book is so much about our connection with the wild, and about life, that I cannot imagine someone reading it and walking away the same person. It will change your view on the wilderness, true wildness, fulfilling dreams, and life itself.

This wonderful woman, Renee Askins, says she once wondered if the wolf recovery program would take a year. As it turns out, it took fourteen years.

It was worth it to the very end.
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