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Reading Water: Lessons from the River (Capital Discoveries) (Capital Discoveries) [Paperback]

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Item description for Reading Water: Lessons from the River (Capital Discoveries) (Capital Discoveries) by Rebecca Lawton...

In the tradition of America's strong pioneer women, Rebecca Lawton was one of the first women river guides in the West. For millions of Americans and foreign visitors who have navigated America's great rivers by raft or boat - and for those who wish they could - this book will help them understand rivers and their impact on the human emotional landscape in a deeper sense. It offers such seekers, not only the thrill rides and vacation destinations of our rivers, but also their rich ecosystems and spiritual wellsprings. As Rebecca Lawton says, "To those who come to know them well, rivers are home..It was the river that taught me instinctive responses, in an unparalleled mentorship that led me throughout the American West every day for more than a decade. Being on the river every day taught me to read water - to psyche out where rocks hid in riffles, find safe passage in inscrutable rapids, and keep moving in flatwater sections." Now, years later, she offers "Reading Water" and the countless lessons she learned from interpreting rivers and currents, living in the river community, and becoming part of a boater's subculture.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   198
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 5.25" Height: 8.25"
Weight:   0.54 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Publisher   Capital Books
ISBN  1931868611  
ISBN13  9781931868617  

Availability  0 units.

More About Rebecca Lawton

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Rebecca Lawton is a Senior Lecturer in the Institute of Psychological Sciences, University of Leeds. In 2009, she took up a secondment at Bradford Institute of Health Research where she leads a multi-disciplinary team of researchers, innovation managers and administrative staff to deliver on research, evaluation and innovation/implementation projects on patient safety. Rebecca is a member of the Yorkshire Quality and Safety Research Group.

Rebecca Lawton currently resides in the state of California. Rebecca Lawton was born in 1954 and has an academic affiliation as follows - Bradford Institute for Health Research.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > General
2Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > Memoirs
3Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > Specific Groups > Women
4Books > Subjects > Outdoors & Nature > Ecology
5Books > Subjects > Outdoors & Nature > Reference
6Books > Subjects > Reference > Writing > Travel Writing
7Books > Subjects > Science > Nature & Ecology > General
8Books > Subjects > Sports > Biographies > General
9Books > Subjects > Sports > General
10Books > Subjects > Sports > Water Sports > Canoeing > General
11Books > Subjects > Sports > Water Sports > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Reading Water: Lessons from the River (Capital Discoveries) (Capital Discoveries)?

Reading Water is a learning *and* feeling experience  Dec 14, 2006
This lovely book seems simple enough on the surface (the memoirs of a woman river rafting guide), but, like water itself, there's much more going on beneath the surface. Reading Water is part of the Capital Discoveries Book Series from Capital Books, chosen for their focus on "journeys of self-discovery, transformation, inner awareness, and recovery." This book is a perfect fit for that series.

Lawton weaves many threads into each essay, much like the interwoven currents of the braided rivers she describes in one essay. Some threads are past, present, and further past; others are experience, observation, and research. These threads feel somewhat unrelated until the questions gradually flow over the reader like a gentle sprinkle as opposed to a downpour of forced epiphany.

Her writing style is beautiful and poetic (with the minor exception of an undue fondness for sentence fragments). Her style takes a few pages to get used to, but then it becomes hypnotic. To pose an obvious metaphor, her phrasing pulls the readers along with the sureness and variety of a peaceful river with occasional rapids.

Lawton's greatest strength as a writer is how she combines a scholar's depth of knowledge with a romantic's depth of feeling. She does a great job of interlacing fact and experience. The curious patterns in the lives of salmon might be discussed objectively in one passage, followed closely by the delight of feasting on their flesh in the next. Turning the pages of Reading Water, like reading the best of memoirs, is a learning *and* feeling experience.

As a memoir or as an investigation of the power of moving water to affect human beings, Reading Water is strongly recommended.
Reading Life  May 9, 2005
"reading water" is the river runner's term for seeing things below the surface, things that might leave only a subtle sign on the surface but may be crucial to your survival. Lawton is a trustworthy guide to the subtle signs--signs of time and geological forces and biological creativity and poetic wonders and human truths--that are easily missed but which make life far more wonder-ful. This is a gem of literary nature writing, with a keen poetic eye, but unlike much of the genre, in which writers may have spent too many years in the classroom and then tried to impose too many abstractions or too many other writer's styles onto nature, Lawton's classroom has been the roaringly real and deep and raw and beautiful nature of the Grand Canyon and other wilderness rivers, where river guides must face real matters of life and death and meaning, and she has allowed it to speak to her directly and meaningfully.
as captivating as a lovely river  Jun 25, 2003
This collection of essays, in which Rebecca Lawton recounts adventures she's had in her many years as a boatman on Western rivers, is lovely. Though her descriptions of nature are not particularly lush, they capture memorable scenes with a brief, snapshot effect that leaves detailed images in the reader's mind. She fleshes out her descriptions with scientific and geologic facts--her writing is not burdened by science, but rather enlivened by it.
Lawton tells of how she nearly drowned a friend of hers with her own hubris; how she learned to get out of swift eddies; and how she became a boatman in the first place, despite the bias against females in that profession.
She also talks about her failed marriage, her mother's death from cancer, and a faithless lover. She draws life lessons from the characteristics of rivers, and although a few of the lessons seem too pat, or contrived to fit the river motif, many of them seem right on the money.
And always Lawson's writing has a sincere, honest tone, as if she is not trying to make herself look good so much as pondering what she has learned, from life and the river.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading about lives they will never live, or who values the wisdom others have worked hard to attain.
Wonderful Essays about Nature  Dec 27, 2002
Rebecca Lawton's collection of essays is lovely. She describes her rafting trips, the geology of the rivers she loves so much and draws comparisons to how rivers are like life. I thoroughly enjoyed the tales of her adventures and learned a lot about life by reading "Reading Water."

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