Must Read Book

Price, Jennifer, Flight Maps: Adventures with Nature in Modern America (1999).

I'm trying to avoid saying that Jenny Price is a cross between Stephen Jay Gould, Erma Bombeck, and the Banana Republic catalogue when it was still written by freelancers who later went on to become award-winning novelists and nonfiction writers. Price looks at ordinary things and figures out why they matter for our historical relationship with nature. Along the way, she does a hell of a lot of terrific historical research. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll learn a whole lot and you'll be bugging her publisher for the next book, which is about nature in L.A. Which is not an oxymoron in Jenny Price's capable hands.

Recommended by Virginia Joy Scharff, Department of History, University of New Mexico

I am the author of Taking the Wheel: Women and the Coming of the Motor Age (1991) and the forthcoming Twenty Thousand Roads: Women's Movements and the West. I also write mystery novels under the name of Virginia Swift, including Brown-Eyed Girl (2000) and Bad Company (forthcoming, 2002).