Kerri Stebbins's Reviews > In Earshot of Water: Notes from the Columbia Plateau

In Earshot of Water by Paul Lindholdt
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's review
Mar 06, 12

really liked it
bookshelves: true-stories, favorites
Recommended for: anyone who has ever stood next to a river in a moment of quiet reverie.
Read from February 18 to March 05, 2012 — I own a copy

A fellow riverwalker, Paul is also one of my favorite professors from my time as an undergrad. This is is his first book, and the first creative piece I've read of his, and I can happily say with zero bias that it's a well-written and well-assembled collection.

Told from a meandering point of view through myriad shifts of time and physical place, Lindholdt chronicles his past and present relationship with his native outdoor region, his outrage and steady, shallow hope for the reclaiming of a broken land and lost salmon, and his journey to finding peace alongside water after losing his eldest son in a kayaking accident in Puget Sound.

He strives earnestly to create a poignant living history of his chosen bioregion, and it's at once stunning and seemingly hopelessly damned. (I'm sorry; I really couldn't resist the pun potential just then. I somehow think Paul would approve.)

I wonder if someone who has never seen the places he has--who's never floated the Snake River or ogled the Cascade Range or traipsed the Frank Church Wilderness--would appreciate the collection as much as someone who has. But I verily hope so.

[4 stars for pristine storytelling and a strong sense of place.]
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