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A Field Guide to Getting Lost Paperback – June 27, 2006
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--Los Angeles Times
"An altogether sublime collection. . . she sees in the act of embracing the unknown a gateway to self-transcendence."
--Maria Popova, Brainpickings.org
"This indespensable California writer's most personal book yet, alive as ever to the subtle nuances of the natural world, but newly responsive to the promptings of her own heart and history."
--San Fransisco Chronicle
"This meditation on the pleasures and terrors of getting lost is . . . a series of peregrinations, leading the reader to unexpected vistas."
--The New Yorker
"An ode to losing yourself and finding out what's on the other side of familiarity. For Ms. Solnit . . . getting lost is more than a matter of merely physical circumstances. It's a state of mind to be embraced and explored, a gateway to discovering more about yourself in relation to the rest of the world."
--The Dallas Morning News
From the Back Cover
The New Yorker
"This indispensable California writers most personal book yet."
San Francisco Chronicle
"An intriguing amalgam of personal memoir, philosophical speculation, natural lore, cultural history, and art criticism . . . a book to set you wandering down strangely fruitful trails of thought."
Los Angeles Times
- ASIN : 0143037242
- Publisher : Penguin Books; Reprint edition (June 27, 2006)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 224 pages
- ISBN-10 : 9780143037248
- ISBN-13 : 978-0143037248
- Item Weight : 6.1 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.08 x 0.61 x 7.72 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #39,620 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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“There is a voluptuous pleasure in all that sadness, and I wonder where it comes from, because as we usually construe the world, sadness and pleasure should be far apart. Is it that the joy that comes from other people always risks sadness, because even when love doesn’t fail, mortality enters in; is it that there is a place where sadness and joy are not distinct, where all emotion lies together, a sort of ocean into which the tributary streams of distinct emotions go, a faraway deep inside; is it that such sadness is only the side effect of art that describes the depth of our lives, and to see that described in all its potential for loneliness and pain is beautiful?”
And one more because I can’t help myself:
“The places in which any significant event occurred become embedded with some of that emotion, and so to recover the memory of the place is to recover the emotion, and sometimes to revisit the place uncovers the emotion. Every love has its landscape. Thus place, which is always spoken of as though it only counts when you’re present, possesses you in its absence, takes on another life as a sense of place, a summoning in the imagination with all the atmospheric effect and association of a powerful emotion.”
As one person said, if someone asked me what it's about, I couldn't say.
Still, there's something to getting lost, and I appreciate that.
That being said... although this book wasn’t especially interesting to me, the few passages that connected did bring about new understandings of the concept of finding oneself through the act of losing. Still wouldn’t likely read it again.
Top reviews from other countries
Solnit sees getting, and being, lost not as a problem, but as a pleasure, or opportunity for growth, or something to be learned from. In a series of chapters, she explores a variety of ways to get lost – spatially, in our thinking, in our memories – or to lose something or someone. The chapters themselves articulately meander through a variety of ideas, then, just when you wonder if Solnit has herself lost her train of thought, she ties up the topic with insight and wit.