The Golden Spruce: A True Story of Myth, Madness, and Greed

The Golden Spruce: A True Story of Myth, Madness, and Greed

4.3 18
by John Vaillant
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0393328643

ISBN-13: 9780393328646

Pub. Date: 05/17/2006

Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.

A tale of obsession so fierce that a man kills the thing he loves most: the only giant golden spruce on earth.
When a shattered kayak and camping gear are found on an uninhabited island in the Pacific Northwest, they reignite a mystery surrounding a shocking act of protest. Five months earlier, logger-turned-activist Grant Hadwin had plunged naked into a river

Overview

A tale of obsession so fierce that a man kills the thing he loves most: the only giant golden spruce on earth.
When a shattered kayak and camping gear are found on an uninhabited island in the Pacific Northwest, they reignite a mystery surrounding a shocking act of protest. Five months earlier, logger-turned-activist Grant Hadwin had plunged naked into a river in British Columbia's Queen Charlotte Islands, towing a chainsaw. When his night's work was done, a unique Sitka spruce, 165 feet tall and covered with luminous golden needles, teetered on its stump. Two days later it fell.
As vividly as John Krakauer puts readers on Everest, John Vaillant takes us into the heart of North America's last great forest.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780393328646
Publisher:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
05/17/2006
Pages:
288
Sales rank:
224,060
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.90(d)

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Golden Spruce 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 18 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Never would I have thought that I could be captivated with a book dedicated to a tree but the author takes you through from ancient history to the present day. It is a story of Native American stories, beliefs, and history and on into the logging industry and conservation. All along however there is a criminal story going on in the background and ocasionally in the fore front. This book could be a novel if the story weren't so true. This book held me captive for four solid days of reading. Vaillant has done a tremendous amount of research. His writing skills compare to those of some of the best history writeds of the day.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is excellent, it surveys not only the particular event of the tree being cut, but also a complete history of logging and man's connections to the woods around him. I loved this book and would recommend it to history buffs and conservationists alike
Guest More than 1 year ago
Like Krakauer John Valliant captures the restless nature of men for whom the earth has become too small. Will there still be men like Grant Hadwin on this earth in hundred years? I doubt it. Grant was as unique and strange as the tree he killed. Both stood out among their peers, both had to adapt to survive in their environments. But while the golden spruce became healthy and was loved, Hadwin descended into madness and alienated people. Did he see a kindred spirit in the tree? He saw it as sickly yet celebrated. Was he jealous? More important than psychosis of Hadwin and his horrible deed is the history of conquest, logging and greed in a remote area of British Columbia. Valliant's detailed writing paints a tragic portrait of the clear cutting of one of the last great forests on earth. The dry data on board feet shipped, acreage felled and square miles decimated are mind numbing. To read this book is to understand that humankind is totally insane. Just like the evil Hadwin we are hell bent on destroying everything we love.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book contains a history of logging, an environmentalist in the making, a story of greed and a tree that binds all of these elements. I like the way Vaillant weaves the story of a people and a tree through a fascinating history of the Northwest. This well documented work contains all the elements of a great mystery.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you live in the Pacific Northwest or you just love Ecotopia, this is a must read. Its descriptions will bring you to the Queen Charlotte Islands. You will feel the chill of the cold Pacific and the mystery of the mist that enshrouds and nourishes the most beautiful part of North America.
MaddieL More than 1 year ago
This book is a wealth of information on a time of growth in the US and puts a piercing spotlight on our methods of logging to satisfy our voracious need for lumber. It really made me realize how little logging was regulated and how much damage has been done by clearcutting and machinery. The Golden Spruce was a lovely, one-of-a-kind spruce in Northern British Columbia which was revered by the Haida people. It was destroyed by one man whose style reminded me of Ted Kazinski's response to what he perceived as society needing a wake-up call. I am so glad I read it!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is part science, part cultural history and entirely interesting. Who would have guessed logging and sociology and nature could be intertwined in a story so well? And a true one at that. I believe anyone with even a remote interest in the Pacific Northwest or forests, or Native Americans will find this book unforgettable. I hope the author writes more.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Vaillant has become one of my favorite authors
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Do you love trees ..... absolutely fascinating slow boil of history, trees and a crazy man ... or was he?
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