Reviews

Library Journal
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Ehrlich (The Future of Ice: A Journey into Cold) has done the mildly unthinkable: she traveled to tsunami-devastated Japan just months after the March 2011 deluge. The waters may have mostly returned to the sea, but the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant was still churning waste into the air and water. Bodies were still being uncovered; once tight-knit villages stood as ghost towns; sorrow hung in the air along with the summer heat. There she interviewed fishermen, farmers, teachers, monks, nuns, and even a retired geisha. All of these brave souls are survivors in one way or another-the loss of their parents, children, friends, homes, and/or lands is staggering, one horrific story followed by another. Verdict Readers will certainly not find this type of journey recommended by Conde Nast or Travel & Leisure. The descriptions of the stench of the dead and the grief of the living are alternately numbing and horrifying. Nothing and no one was left unharmed: schoolchildren, elderly pensioners, cats, dogs, horses, cows, fish, crops. A well-written, important book to read-if you can take it. [See Prepub Alert, 8/3/12.]-Lee Arnold, Historical Soc. of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

*Starred Review* Gifted, adventurous, and extolled nature writer Ehrlich has abiding connections to Japan, so she returned there soon after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami. With the valiant assistance of her guides and interpreters, especially photographer Yajima Masumi, she explored the devastated Tohoku coast and listened to survivors' stories as they endured strong daily aftershocks. Fisherman Kikuchi-san describes being swept into a 30-foot tsunami wave of water black with diesel and gas, sewage, dirt, and blood and dense with smashed houses, boats, cars, and bodies. Others remember running for their lives as the water surged toward them and seeing loved ones drown as entire towns were erased. Having farmed in the Sendai region for centuries, Masumi's family struggles to replant after the tsunami only to lose it all again in a brutal typhoon. Many of the people Ehrlich meets, including Ito Tsuyako, a lovely 84-year-old geisha, are determined to adapt, but others have no hope. And the catastrophe is ongoing, as radiation from the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant contaminates land and sea. Ehrlich's invaluable chronicle subtly raises questions about coastal disasters, global warming, and nuclear power as the beauty and precision of her prose and her profound and knowledgeable insights into nature's might and matters spiritual and cultural evoke a deep state of awe and sympathy.--Seaman, Donna Copyright 2010 Booklist


Library Journal
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Ehrlich (The Future of Ice: A Journey into Cold) has done the mildly unthinkable: she traveled to tsunami-devastated Japan just months after the March 2011 deluge. The waters may have mostly returned to the sea, but the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant was still churning waste into the air and water. Bodies were still being uncovered; once tight-knit villages stood as ghost towns; sorrow hung in the air along with the summer heat. There she interviewed fishermen, farmers, teachers, monks, nuns, and even a retired geisha. All of these brave souls are survivors in one way or another-the loss of their parents, children, friends, homes, and/or lands is staggering, one horrific story followed by another. Verdict Readers will certainly not find this type of journey recommended by Conde Nast or Travel & Leisure. The descriptions of the stench of the dead and the grief of the living are alternately numbing and horrifying. Nothing and no one was left unharmed: schoolchildren, elderly pensioners, cats, dogs, horses, cows, fish, crops. A well-written, important book to read-if you can take it. [See Prepub Alert, 8/3/12.]-Lee Arnold, Historical Soc. of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.