Item description for Nature's Extremes: Eight Seasons Shape a Southwestern Land by Lawrence W. Cheek...
Summer, fall, winter, spring. Four Seasons . . . right?
Not according to author Larry Cheek, who makes a strong case for there being eight -- in Arizona, anyway. Because of the numerous climatic zones found within its borders (ranging from lush Alpine forests to arid Sonoran deserts), the state is blessed, some might say cursed, with weather at its most extreme, and everything in between.
Cheek (and the photographers who contributed to this book) are clearly intrigued by extremes. They've gone out to observe when the weather promised its worst because that's when the landscape delivers its best. And they've caught the magic of Arizona's soft seasons, too.
With lyrical, heartfelt text, and vivid, gripping photography, they invite readers into a relationship with Nature -- no holds barred. We see Nature on the rampage: torn apart by flash floods, carved by rapid rain-and-freeze cycles, ignited by lightning-cracked monsoon skies, and ablaze in timber- and wildlife-destroying fires.
But the softer side is readily apparent, too: the spectacle of wildflowers in mind-boggling profusion filling mountain bowers and covering desert foothills, the music of waterfalls cascading over mossy rocks and trickling through ferns, and the heart-stopping sight of golden aspens and coppery-hued sycamores transformed by nippy nights into brilliant displays of color.
Illustrated with more than 130 full-color photographs by Arizona Highways photographers, this beautiful coffee-table book makes a perfect gift for nature lovers.
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Lawrence W. Cheek is the architecture critic for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer and is an honorary member of the American Institute of Architects. His most recent books include "The Navajo Long Walk" and "Kokopelli". A longtime Arizona resident, he now lives in Issaquah, Washington.