"A vivid historical account...Thompson shines in giving a sense of what it means to love a place that's been designated a 'sacrifice zone.'"âe
"Award-winning environmental journalist Thompson presents deep history of the Animas River Valley and surrounding mountains near Durango and Silverton in southwestern Colorado. Thompson, a sixth-generation Coloradan, tells a tale of pollution and abuse by mining interests in a style that sways from conversational colloquialism to matter-of-fact reporting and reflects the passion of an activist whose family history is tied to each page he writes. He reveals that the 2015 Gold King Mine disaster is simply the latest in a long line of mining accidents suffered by the region, as he recounts the evolution of extracting minerals from the mountains. The reader will revel in the beauty of the Colorado landscape while recoiling from descriptions of cruelty towards the Native Americans and the horrors of acid mine drainage. Though lightly sourced, Thompson's account provides readers with a wealth of knowledge about the American West, environmental degradation, and the efforts to clean up a century of mining pollution.--Pekoll, James Copyright 2018 Booklist"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review:
"Mixing reportage, historical inquiry, and personal narrative, environmental journalist Thompson uses the Gold King Mine disaster as the starting point of an investigation into the environmental history of Colorado's Animas River Valley, stretching back to the beginning of European colonization. In 2015, three million gallons of bright-orange, heavy-metal-tainted water spewed out in a matter of minutes from the defunct Gold King Mine near Silverton, Colo. Though the immediate danger of the toxins passed relatively quickly, it irreparably altered the relationships that the local Diné (Navajo) had with their land. "Our history is a history of pollution," Thompson writes, detailing the damages caused by even the most primitive forms of mining in a seemingly endless war between mining companies and the humans and wildlife that depend on the water systems near mining sites. Thompson, a southwestern Colorado native, knowledgeably and sensitively addresses ethical questions at the heart of his inquiry, including what it would mean to restore the water system to its precolonial state. He also effortlessly explains the technical elements of this story, such as the complex chemistry of the environmental effects of mining. This is a vivid historical account of the Animas region, and Thompson shines in giving a sense of what it means to love a place that's been designated a "sacrifice zone." (Feb.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
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