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Around the World in 80 Trees

4.64  ·  Rating details ·  660 ratings  ·  141 reviews
Trees are one of humanity's most constant and most varied companions. From India's sacred banyan tree to the fragrant cedar of Lebanon, they offer us sanctuary and inspiration – not to mention the raw materials for everything from aspirin to maple syrup.

In Around the World in 80 Trees, expert Jonathan Drori uses plant science to illuminate how trees play a role in every pa
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published May 29th 2018 by Laurence King Publishing (first published May 28th 2018)
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Average rating 4.64  · 
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 ·  660 ratings  ·  141 reviews

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Spencer Orey
Apr 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: birds
Awful title. Questionable cover. Gorgeous book!

I'm a complete sucker for books with beautiful nature illustrations like this one, and it's a special treat when the writing can keep up with the pictures.

Each of the 80 trees gets a page or two of thoughtful text full of origin stories, historical uses or cases, and reflections from expeditions around the world. Those stories are lined with beautiful illustrations of leaves, nuts, fruits, flowers, and sometimes whole trees. I'm inspired to learn
May 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
“Keep a green tree in your heart and perhaps a singing bird will come.”
— Chinese proverb

I am a fan of author Jonathon Drori's "Ted Talks" on nature so I had to read his book. The author grew up near the Royal Botanic Garden, Kew learned to appreciate botany from his father who insisted on weekly excursions to the garden. This is a man who appreciates both the science and beauty of nature and it is reflected in his beautiful book.

Taking the name from Jules Verne's “Around the World in Eighty Da
Sep 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science
A colleague of mine, in the Dendrology (the study of wooded plants) Department, knowing that I live in the middle of a nature preserve and my inclination to wander through nature recommended this book. I am glad he did.

Jonathan Drori goes around the world and highlights the wonderful trees from that region. Each description, superbly written and engaging, is filled with gorgeous illustrations by Lucille Clere. The vignettes not only are full of information about the plant but also highlights the
Literary Soirée
🌳 🌳 🌳 🌳 🌳

What a stunning ode to nature, told through the most beautiful illustrations and stories that make the world come alive! The author reveals the secret of trees ... from lime trees that line Berlin's Unter den Linden boulevard to sacred Banyan trees in India, California’s storied redwoods, and London’s eucalyptus-paved avenues. Plus tree-climbing goats, radioactive nuts, self-mummifying monks. It’s a weird wonderful travelogue for outdoor enthusiasts and lovers of well-told tales! 5/5

David Wineberg
Mar 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Trees are gifts. Just figure out what their special features are, and you can keep the gifts coming. The gifts can be as simple as shade, as complex as medicine, as practical as boards and posts or as supportive as fruits and nuts. And that’s just for humans. In Around the World in 80 Trees, Jonathan Drori demonstrates a true passion and appreciation of those gifts, as he describes 80 of them by geographical region. He describes the, what’s unique about how they work and stories of how they fit ...more
Clare O'Beara
I love this book of a jaunt around the world, looking at trees on the way. The author, who grew up wandering Kew Gardens, looks at British Isles trees first, with the rowan for Scotland and Arbutus for Ireland. Off to Finland to meet the birch, wandering through cork oak forests and larches across the continent, before encountering the exotic and valuable timbers, spices, barks and resins of the fabled Orient, bloated looking baobabs of Africa, toxic trees of nutrient-poor countries, lightweight ...more
nice reading, wonderful illustrations. author highlights various trees in 2-3 pages with some description, history, and fun facts. usually in a light hearted and sometimes jokey way (considering people have decimated many of these species and their habitats, which author does mention). his annotated short bibliography is worth picking up book. has index too.
some of the trees: lime, tanoak, peepul, Western hemlock, Brazil nut, betel, Brazil wood, mangrove.....
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Jan 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nature, trees
You know trees are alive. But do you think of them as living beings? With individuality? And needs?

You will after reading this book.

Author Jonathan Drori, an Ambassador for the WWF and Trustee of the Eden Project, accompanied by illustrator Lucille Clere, takes us on a trip through trees around the world. He visits with trees I know well, like the Elm and the Lodgepole Pine and the Baobob and the Date Palm, but he adds stories and details about the familiar that are surprising and unexpected. He
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: biology, net-galley
A beautiful book for tree lovers. Great illustrations and I love the author's stories. I really learned some new things about my favourite trees!

Thank you NetGalley and publisher for an ARC to read.
Stephen Baird
Jun 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was so privileged to receive a reading copy of this from Laurence King Publishing, and it even came with a beautiful poster.

Everything else I was reading had to be put on hold until I had finished this, though I could have dipped in and out of it as the book is written in episode like chapters following the author around the world. Each chapter describes a different tree and has such brilliant illustrations by Lucille Clerc.

Each chapter explores the historical and cultural aspects of each tree
Sep 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
A profusely and elegantly illustrated book about tree species from around the world. It's for the illustrations that this book earned its fourth start from me, for I found the text interesting but somehow attenuated. I wished for rather more than the abbreviated splashes into cultural significance and ecological importance - I wanted a deep dive. Still, one must appreciate the effort of providing even snippets of such information, and the book itself is a beautiful object.
May 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a fantastic book about some of the more important or iconic tree species around the world. It is more of a reference and discusses each tree separately so I took my time to read it. The illustrations are excellent and I learned a lot of history of many trees that I thought I knew a lot about.

This would be a perfect coffee table gift for anyone who is interested in ethnobotany or trees in general.
Jul 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction
This is a forever book. Savoring it little by little, it didn’t take me long to realize this book deserves a space on my permanent shelf. The illustrations are gorgeous, the information fascinating. Thanks, Ry, for a wonderful birthday gift.
Gareth Beniston
May 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
Almost a coffee table book I suppose - 2-3 pages of prose on each tree - but beautifully done. Lots of great snippets of info and good illustrations.
Aug 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: have-read
Without a doubt one of the best books I have read this year. It's rarely that I learn anything totally new and truly fascinating from a book, but this is it. Gorgeous, awesome drawings too.
Aug 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Enjoyed reading this wonderful book during my bus rides to & from work and during my breaks. Each tree gets about a page or two at most of a descriptive blend of science, history, and folklore. The information was fascinating and I especially loved the illustrations. Highly recommended! ...more
Oct 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Read this book. Every paragraph has at least one fascinating, often humorous fact. The illustrations are gorgeous. And best of all, you'll become that annoying guy at the party who has an unending supply of interesting facts about trees.

Now I look at every tree, bush, and flower and wonder what untold story it caries.


In North America, Tilia is known as 'basswood', from 'bast', the tree's inner bark, which is often used for cordage and mats. However, across Europe the lime, or linden, h
Lel Budge
Mar 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a stunning book.....the description really doesn’t do it justice.

Each tree has it own ‘chapter’ with a description of the tree, it’s characteristics and also some history surrounding the tree. There are interesting facts, such as, the wood of the Norway Spruce from the Italian Alps was prized among famous violin makers, such as interesting and informative

The illustrations are truly stunning and a work of art in themselves....beautiful

I would like to thank the Author/the
May 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Fun facts to know and tell! Actually, I don't know how many I will remember long enough to tell anyone, but they were definitely fun facts to know. I love trees, and I love armchair travel, so this book seemed like one for me, and I did enjoy it. The author did a good job of making each tree interesting in its own right, and if the biological side doesn't interest you, there are a fair number of fascinating historical and cultural observations as well. The tour of the world part made it more int ...more
Jun 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book was utterly fascinating, exceptionally well written, beautifully illustrated and full of information and juicy details. I really loved every little thing about this book, including the frequent notes on how the specific honey from each tree's flowers taste (for those of you interested, strawberry tree honey is bitter, boxwood honey contains alkaloid poisons, linden honey is pale and richly flavored, sweet chestnut honey is ironically bitter and jarrah tree honey has a malty caramel fla ...more
Apr 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, botany, non-fiction, trees
Intelligently written, informative and beautifully presented.

This book is about trees of the world. It is not about notable individuals, but about tree species. Organised by geographic distribution, each entry describes the tree, including pollination method. The entries include history, pathology, economic, medicinal, ethnobotanic use, and the tree's place in the ecosystem.

Drori is a dendrophile, and it shows. He draws the reader in with his love of trees, and his ability to present information
Dec 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
I loved this book for many reasons. One, I can actually read a page or two at a time if I so choose. Two, the writing is descriptive and detailed but not overly scientific to the point that prior knowledge is required or helpful. Three, the illustrations are gorgeously complimentary to the stories and facts. Four, this book pushes conservation through the lens of appreciation rather than guilt, a lovely and uncommon perspective.

The 4/5 rather than 5/5 rating is driven by two factors. I was not
Beautifully illustrated and well-written, both informative and easy to peruse in spare moments, this book makes an excellent gift. There are a few outstanding omissions (ginko?), but I'd welcome a sequel.
Mike Histand
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
An utterly beautiful and fascinating book about some unusual trees including artful sketches to enhance the reading experience.
Aug 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
I really liked the layout of this book. I thought roughly one page per tree was the perfect pace and there are so many gorgeous illustrations on every page!
Oct 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a beautifully illustrated and fascinating book! The author adds interesting facts and anecdotes as only the British can do. I loved this book!
Aug 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a beautiful book! I found the cultural background and the etymology quite interesting and the illustrations are bedazzling.
Moira Allbritton
Jul 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020
Rather a compact "coffee table" book sporting gorgeous illustrations along with 1 to 2 pages of text explaining use, habitat, and other biological tidbits.
Matthew De Moraes
Sep 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Not often that I purchase a physical copy of a book so I can enjoy the illustrations as well as the content. Loved the book from start to finish. Sends a beautiful message of conservation whilst also reminding us of the strength, resilience and magic of the natural world.
Aug 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Interesting species and intriguing anecdotes. Sometimes I wished the stories continued for a bit longer and a couple of other species were chosen along the way but overall certainly enjoyable. Excellent illustrations!
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Jonathan Drori is a Trustee of The Eden Project,
an Ambassador for the WWF and was for nine
years a Trustee of the Royal Botanic Gardens,
Kew and The Woodland Trust. He is a Fellow of
the Linnean Society and the Zoological Society
of London, and a Member of the Institution
of Engineering and Technology. He is a former
Head of Commissioning for BBC Online and
Executive Producer of more than fifty primetime

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Are you having a difficult time reading these days? If so, you're not alone. Since the pandemic began, I've found it harder to concentrate on...
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“As propagandists have always known, our wish to believe the unbelievable knows no bounds.
p. 142”
“The remaining jarrah [tree] is again in danger, this time from climate change, to which we all contribute and by which all cultures are threatened.” 0 likes
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