Molly's Reviews > Cutting Back: My Apprenticeship in the Gardens of Kyoto

Cutting Back by Leslie Buck
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it was amazing

What a delicious book Cutting Back: My Apprenticeship in the Gardens of Kyoto is. Both the delicacy of pruning and the necessary fearlessness of the pruner are the contradictions at the heart of the arborist's life—and at the heart of Leslie Buck’s book itself. It gave me so much to think about! The whole concept of pruning and shaping is very much like a poet's method of revising.

The delicate hierarchy of the world of Japanese gardening men was beautifully described. Buck’s friendships with these men were tender and complex. Her frustrations, her youthful stubbornness, the hesitating boldness with which she made the leap to Japan in the first place, all unfolded with zest. Although there is a placidity in arbor work, the book had the quality always of leaving me wondering and wanting more--ever leading me to the next chapter. I should say that I also downloaded the audio version from Audible (I am a Gold member—listen to lots and lots of books), so I both read Cutting Back and had it read to me. I very much liked the way the narrator handled the book, a casual American voice in formal Japanese apprenticeship.
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
August 21, 2017 – Shelved

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