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Desert Solitaire (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 12. Januar 1985

4.7 von 5 Sternen 58 Kundenrezensionen

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With language as colorful as a Canyonlands sunset and a perspective as pointed as a prickly pear, Cactus Ed captures the heat, mystery, and surprising bounty of desert life. Desert Solitaire is a meditation on the stark landscapes of the red-rock West, a passionate vote for wilderness, and a howling lament for the commercialization of the American outback.

Pressestimmen

The New Yorker An American Masterpiece. A Forceful Encounter with a Man of Character and Courage.

The New York Times Book Review Like a ride on a bucking bronco...rough, tough, combative. The author is a rebel and an eloquent loner. His is a passionately felt, deeply poetic book...set down in a lean, racing prose, in a close-knit style of power and beauty. -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Taschenbuch.

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Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
This book (first published in 1968) is a wonderful reflection on the desert, desert life, nature, wilderness, humanity and civilisation. The language is strong, utterly honest and sometimes beautiful poetic (".... the times passed extremely slowly, as time should pass, with the days lingering and long, spacious and free as the summers of childhood").

The author warns the reader in the introduction, that some of the book will seem "coarse, rude, bad-tempered, violently prejudiced, unconstructive, antisocial...", but for me it is one man's honest view. Even if I don't agree to all, I really appreciate honesty above all. His reflection on humanity and mankind, while drifting down a river with a friend for many days, is deep and significant. And his distinction between civilisation and culture is just superb.

Living myself in the desert for many years I greatly enjoyed this book. Abbeys description of his feelings in the desert gave names to many of my own feelings, never put into words yet - only into photos.
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Waren das noch Zeiten, als man im Arches Nationalpark erst in den ersten Drittel mit dem Auto fahren durfte. Der ganze Rest dieses einmaligen Naturmonumentes war den wetterfesten und abenteuerlustigen vorbehalten. Die Erfahrung als Ranger in dieser noch gar nicht lang zurückliegenden Zeit hat Edward Abbey unterhaltsam und aufwühlend zu Papier gebracht und damit den Anfang zu seiner Oeko-Philosophischen Literatur gemacht! Unbedingt empfehlenswert!
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This is a totally enjoyable and recommended book. My only problem is that the author as a National Park System ranger does so many dangerous things that cannot be condoned. Please do not follow his example. It is very dangerous to do the following, as he did.
1. Hike through the desert without a supply of water. 2. Climb a 13,000 foot peak alone with no one to go for help if needed. 3. Sliding down a 2,000 foot snow slide without proper equipment. 4. Rafting down the Colorado River without a life vest. 5. Descending alone down a canyon for a short cut and getting stuck in a deadly position, with no way to get help. 6. Hiking many places off of established trails all alone. 7. Hiking so far that it requires a more dangerous return in the dark of night. 8. Starting wild fires due to carelessness with pipe smoking. 9. Trying to capture a wild horse all alone and getting run over. This was done while all alone with no possibility of getting help if injured. 10. Drinking water from any available creek, pond or seep. Western water is now dangerous to drink in all western national parks. Treatment is necessary. 11. Eating five eggs and half a pound of bacon for breakfast. Is this the reason he died so young?
Many tourists may read this book and follow his bad examples. I wish that he had given more words of caution. Follow the advice of more knowledgeable park rangers. Enjoy this wonderful book but be careful.
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Abbey receives a sympathy vote from me for several reasons: This is one of his first works, and it's also the first one of his that I read. But my review here is based upon re-reading the work almost 20 years later.
Edward Abbey is a man at home with himself. One gets the impression reading Desert Solitaire that he is always by himself, even though he was married, and had several children. I've no doubt he was a loner, and the ideal world he portrays is one where Abbey travels the world alone with nature - talking to snakes, chasing wild horses and cows, and observing nature's interplay, far from the meddling influences of humanity. As a ranger in utah, he views the intruding, artificial world of we termite-people with disdain. As a writer, he builds on this and other themes in a matter-of-fact, yet deeply challenging way. This is the style of writing he came to be known so well for in his later works.
Environmentalists like to claim Abbey as their spokesman, and Abbey definitely gave the appearance of a nature-lover. But I'm more inclined to think of him as a "human-hater". I think he knew deep-down that humans are nature's spawn, and nature has always been powerless to be pro-active in perserving its various features. Nothing is sacred, including the wonderful architecture of the Colorado Plateau. Abbey was deeply in love with the alone-ness that the area represented to him, and was every bit as deeply angered by the ever-increasing ranks of people intent on despoiling it. If that's an environmentalist, then so be it. But in Desert Solitaire, there is never any pretense that man and desert could ever be compatible. Indeed, if there is any point to be made, it is exactly the opposite.
You'll find it tough being the bad guy. Nevertheless, it'll be every bit as hard to put this book down. Read it and weep.
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When reading DESERT SOLITAIRE, it's easy (and judging from many of the reviews on this page, rather common) to wander off into the side canyon of one's personal perception of Ed Abbey's personality, and before long, find yourself keeled over from the heat. Not a very pretty way to go, especially if it means you've ultimately missed the point and real beauty of this eloquant love letter to Utah's Canyonlands.
Abbey captures the true splendor of the desert here, while at the same time speaking with both frankness and conviction of what he saw as the coming flash flood of the land's misuse. His chapter 'Down the River' illustrates this dual purpose of the book perhaps better than any other. Not only does it disarmingly woo the reader, bringing out one's deepest, most romantic feelings of wanderlust, but at the same time, slaps the reader awake with the fact that the story's perfect setting is now lost to all men for all times.
I was lucky enough to have (sort of) know Ed Abbey nearly 20 years ago. He taught a class in short-story writing I took at the University of Arizona. And while I didn't see eye to eye with him on all his political views, or agree with him on his assesment of my papers (the s o b gave me a C) I can tell you the man got a lot of pleasure from just living his life, and a big chuckle from getting at people's goat. Judging from the varied opinions below, DESERT SOLITAIRE seems to have pulled them both off.
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