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The Triumph of Seeds: How Grains, Nuts, Kernels, Pulses, and Pips Conquered the Plant Kingdom and Shaped Human History

The Triumph of Seeds: How Grains, Nuts, Kernels, Pulses, and Pips Conquered the Plant Kingdom and Shaped Human History

by Thor Hanson

Paperback(First Trade Paper Edition)

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As seen on PBS's American Spring LIVE, the award-winning author of Buzz and Feathers presents a natural and human history of seeds, the marvels of the plant kingdom

"The genius of Hanson's fascinating, inspiring, and entertaining book stems from the fact that it is not about how all kinds of things grow from seeds; it is about the seeds themselves." —Mark Kurlansky, New York Times Book Review

We live in a world of seeds. From our morning toast to the cotton in our clothes, they are quite literally the stuff and staff of life: supporting diets, economies, and civilizations around the globe. Just as the search for nutmeg and pepper drove the Age of Discovery, coffee beans fueled the Enlightenment and cottonseed sparked the Industrial Revolution. Seeds are fundamental objects of beauty, evolutionary wonders, and simple fascinations. Yet, despite their importance, seeds are often seen as commonplace, their extraordinary natural and human histories overlooked. Thanks to this stunning new book, they can be overlooked no more. This is a book of knowledge, adventure, and wonder, spun by an award-winning writer with both the charm of a fireside story-teller and the hard-won expertise of a field biologist. A fascinating scientific adventure, it is essential reading for anyone who loves to see a plant grow.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780465097401
Publisher: Basic Books
Publication date: 03/08/2016
Edition description: First Trade Paper Edition
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 192,367
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Thor Hanson is a conservation biologist, Guggenheim Fellow, and author of award-winning books including Buzz, Feathers, The Impenetrable Forest, and The Triumph of Seeds. He lives with his wife and son on an island in Washington State.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Fierce Energy

Seeds Nourish
1. Seed for a Day
2. The Staff of Life
3. Sometimes You Feel Like a Nut

Seeds Unite
4. What the Spike Moss Knows
5. Mendel’s Spores

Seeds Endure
6. Methuselah
7. Take It to the Bank

Seeds Defend
8. By Tooth, Beak, and Gnaw
9. The Riches of Taste
10 The Cheeriest Beans
11. Death by Umbrella

Seeds Travel
12. Irresistible Flesh
13. By Wind and Wave

Conclusion: The Future of Seeds

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