Small Wonder by Barbara Kingsolver is a collection of essays providing, in the voice Kingsolver’s readers have come to rely on, a hopeful examination of the people we seem to be, in one of history’s darker moments, and what we might yet make of ourselves.
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In this collection of essays, the author of High Tide in Tucson brings to us (out of one of history’s darker moments) an extended love song to the world we still have. From its opening parable gleaned from recent news about a lost child saved in an astonishing way, the book moves on to consider a world of surprising and hopeful prospects ranging from an inventive conservation scheme in a remote jungle to the backyard flock of chickens tended by the author’s small daughter.
Whether she is contemplating the Grand Canyon, her vegetable garden, motherhood, adolescence, genetic engineering, TV-watching, the history of civil rights, or the future of a nation founded on the best of all human impulses, these essays are grounded in the author’s belief that our largest problems have grown from the earth’s remotest corners as well as our own backyards, and that answers may lie in those places, too. In the voice Kingsolver’s readers have come to rely on – sometimes grave, occasionally hilarious, and ultimately persuasive – Small Wonder is a hopeful examination of the people we seem to be, and what we might yet make of ourselves.
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