Katina's Reviews > The Botany of Desire: A Plant's-Eye View of the World

The Botany of Desire by Michael Pollan
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's review
Mar 08, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: 2009, food-glorious-food

This book is definitely Pollan's predecessor to "Omnivore's Dilemma." Like "Omnivore's Dilemma," it looks at one issue - to really simplify it, plants - through 4 different lenses. The chapters focus on the apple, the tulip, marijuana, and the potato. Of these, I found the potato and tulip, with their examination of food history, plant markets, and genetics, most intriguing. I was especially rapt by the detailed description of genetic modification technology in the potato chapter.

As for the chapters on apples and weed, I would have been satisfied with a little less Johnny Appleseed. Also Pollan seemed quite ridiculous (and stoned) when he started talking about how great thinkers, including Plato, were high when they came up with their best stuff. All in all, a good read, with interesting factoids.

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