Customer Reviews for

The National Parks: America's Best Idea

Average Rating 3
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(27)

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(13)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

7 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

Defending the book...

Although I agree that there was an opportunity to have the pictures pop for us readers - keep in mind that the authors are environmentalists... glossy pictures would not be environmental friendly...

If you want to see the wonderful parks - buy the DVD and support PB...
Although I agree that there was an opportunity to have the pictures pop for us readers - keep in mind that the authors are environmentalists... glossy pictures would not be environmental friendly...

If you want to see the wonderful parks - buy the DVD and support PBS when they have it for sale during fund raising events...

And if you truly want to see these parks - go visit them in person.

This was the intent of the book/DVD - to have people want to visit these parks in person, to motivate enviromental concerns to not lose these natural wonders.

posted by 528603 on September 26, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

6 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

Great idea poorly executed

If you pick up this book in hopes of great visuals, like those in both editions of Great Lodges of the National Parks (also broadcast on PBS as well as published in book form), be prepared for a severe disappointment.

The authors and publisher have chosen to print th...
If you pick up this book in hopes of great visuals, like those in both editions of Great Lodges of the National Parks (also broadcast on PBS as well as published in book form), be prepared for a severe disappointment.

The authors and publisher have chosen to print this book on flimsy, uncoated paper. As a consequence, none of the photography "pops" off the page they way you'd expect. This is a tragedy, given the inherently visual nature of the subject matter.

To get an idea of what this book could have been like, look at the dust jacket, which is printed on substantial, coated paper that makes the photography look wonderful.

Given the premium price we're asked to pay for this book, it is a shame it hasn't been printed on premium paper (which, by the way, is readily recyclable).

posted by aLearnedOne on September 9, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2009

    The National Parks, America's Best Idea

    Truly a book that will keep you reading and will spark your interest in visting our country's Parks. It is an excellent companion to the DVD set. Informative, revealing, and educational. Great gift idea for anyone not just Park visitors.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 5, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    The Park system is ours to enjoy. Americas playground

    Beautifully created. If you wonder how and when each National Park was enacted and the people who stood up for the the land. This book will give you a greater appreciation for OUR National Parks. It is the best idea!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 13, 2010

    Gift

    This book was a gift and the recipient is very satisfied.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2010

    The National Parks

    The photography is beautiful--a breathtaking look at our national parks. Grateful for the wisdom and perseverance of those who fought to protect them for future generations...

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 30, 2010

    Magnificent

    I do not believe this book could be surpassed in excellence. The only way of enhancing this book would be to view the companion DVD's as you are reading the book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 17, 2010

    Wonderful and Thought-provoking, but CAUTION - not a tourist guide!

    The National Parks, written by Dayton Duncan and co-written by Ken Burns
    is based on the excellent PBS mini-series now on DVD (directed by Burns). It is not a tourist guide in that each national park is not in- dividually described and does not have its own chapter; rather, this book is a history of how the National Park System came into being and then describes each park in the context of the chapter being discussed. Also, there is a listing at the beginning of the book with the name of each park and the year of its establishment.

    In the course of reading this large volume one finds out about every- one people responsible for the Park System and the individual parks, many of whom would be unfamiliar (at least to me). Of course John Muir and Theodore Roosevelt are omnipresent throughout and deservedly so for their well-known conservation efforts but they are part of a huge,va- ried canvas that makes for thrilling and enlightening reading. We are also presented with a rich background of our country at the time - its people and politics, some of which you may not agree with but it is all there for you to witness.

    To top it all off, the pictures are absolutely magnificent and show the
    dedication that was taken in this regard and to the project in general.
    The pictures of Yosemite and Denali National Parks were especially br-
    eathtaking, all the more so since I had visited both recently! I don't
    see how the pictures or the text could be improved upon. This project
    was at least ten years in the making and it shows.

    In closing,this book is highly recommended - don't let the historical
    narrative dissuade you from purchasing it. It is very illuminating and insightful and has information you wouldn't readily find in another volume of this type. Even if you have another book on the parks, the present volume will be a worhwhile complement. And I almost guarantee
    that you will be hooked into buying the DVD's as well, which pretty much
    follow the text in the book (with a few abridgements and modifications).
    Enjoy!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 5, 2009

    The National Parks by Dayton Duncan

    I found the National Parks by Dayton Duncan an excellent read for those who enjoy reading about and visiting our greatest treasure "our" national parks! It follows very closely (since they worked together) the PBS video series by Ken Burns. The excellent photography and art, both current and from the beginning of the parks development, accompanies individual stories and the real struggles that so many people (not all US citizens) sacrificed to found each park. I remain humbled by those sacrifices for people like me who they would never meet. I find myself thinking that perhaps a gift of money to keep the parks alive for centuries to come might be an appropriate thank you from each of us who reads this awesome book. I found myself with tear-stained eyes many times as I discovered that many other people love the national parks as much as me!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 30, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Great companion to the television series!

    Picked up a copy of this book a few weeks ago when I saw it at my local book store. I had been looking forward to the TV series on PBS but did not know that there would also be a book. So far I have watched the first three episodes in the TV series and it appears that the book covers the same ground, but I enjoy being able to linger over the photos and I think reading the text makes a more lasting impression. This is an excellent coffee table book, most anyone will enjoy paging through it and looking at the fascinating photos. Both the book and the TV series examine and illustrate how the radical idea of persevering great tracts of America's most spectacular wild lands came to fruition. The United States was the first country in the world to have national parks. Through this book you meet the famous and not so famous folks who were committed to preserving wild places; people like John Muir, Teddy Roosevelt, and Stephen Mather. I also recommend the excellent Across The High Lonesome, much of which takes place in Kings Canyon and Sequoia National parks!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2010

    A trip to beautiful places

    This book, like the documentaries that inspired it, is filled with images that are awe-inspiring and the many stories and history related to our national parks. I've given twice as a gift to the delight of those who received it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2010

    Beautiful

    There are no words to express the beauty of the pictures in the book. Beautiful!!

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  • Posted December 28, 2009

    So this is America?

    Visit the beauty of America at home with this book. I have heard about the more prominent National Parks my whole life, but what about the others? This books takes you there and inspires one to visit and understand the beauty of nature and the pride of America.

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  • Posted December 27, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Amazing History

    This was purchased after I watched the entire PBS series on TV. It was a gift for a person who is blind. The images invoked in even the words alone makes this a worthwhile set, particularly for someone unable to see the views shown on the special.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2009

    The National Parks: America's Best Idea

    I got this book at my local library in hardcover and the pictures are amazing. The text is very informative and tells you a lot about the history of our national parks. I've been to some of the parks in the book and the pictures look exactly like the real thing.

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  • Posted December 5, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Photography

    Outstanding photos of the National Parks. A real Keeper!!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 12, 2009

    a must for everyone-especially those who love to travel and learn

    shows the beauty of the usa-the real country

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted October 10, 2009

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    Posted November 19, 2009

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    Posted December 12, 2009

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    Posted February 1, 2010

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    Posted December 19, 2009

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