Books : reviews

Rebecca Solnit.
A Field Guide to Getting Lost.
Canongate. 2005

In this investigation into loss, losing and being lost, Rebecca Solnit explores the challenges of living with uncertainty.

A Field Guide to Getting Lost takes in subjects as eclectic as memory and mapmaking, Hitchcock movies and Renaissance painting.

Beautifully written, this book combines memoir, history and philosophy, shedding glittering new light on the way we live now.

Rebecca Solnit.
A Paradise Built in Hell: the extraordinary communities that arise in disaster.
Penguin. 2009

What most people believe and what actually happens in the aftermath of disaster are two different things

The most startling thing about disasters, according to award-winning author Rebecca Solnit, is not merely that so many people rise to the occasion, but that they do so with joy. That joy reveals an ordinarily unmet yearning for community, purposefulness, and meaningful work that disaster often provides. A Paradise Built in Hell is an investigation of the moments of altruism, resourcefulness, and generosity that arise amid disaster’s grief and disruption and considers their implications for everyday life. It points to a new vision of what society could become-one that is less authoritarian and fearful, more collaborative and local.

Rebecca Solnit.
Men Explain Things to Me: and other essays.
Granta. 2014