BOOKS

Who are the pioneering and imaginative women who dared … to take simple walks without the chaperone of men? To pick up a pen and write under their own names? To record their protests, poetry and prose? To change history? In Writing Wild, Kathryn Aalto lyrically profiles 25 women, both historical and current, whose influential nature writing has deepened our connection to and understanding of the natural world. These inspiring wordsmiths are scholars, spiritual seekers, conservationists, scientists, novelists, and explorers. They defy easy categorization but share a bold authenticity that makes their work distinct and universal. Featured writers include:

  • Dorothy Wordsworth, Susan Fenimore Cooper, Gene Stratton-Porter, Mary Austin, and Vita Sackville-West
  • Nan Shepherd, Rachel Carson, Mary Oliver, Carolyn Merchant, and Annie Dillard
  • Gretel Ehrlich, Leslie Marmon Silko, Diane Ackerman, Robin Wall Kimmerer, and Lauret Savoy
  • Rebecca Solnit, Kathleen Jamie, Carolyn Finney, Helen Macdonald, and Saci Lloyd
  • Andrea Wulf, Camille T. Dungy, Elena Passarello, Amy Liptrot, and Elizabeth Rush

Part travel essay, literary biography, and cultural history, Writing Wild ventures into the landscapes and lives of extraordinary writers and encourages a new generation of women to pick up their pens, head outdoors, and start writing wild. Publication date June 24, 2020.

Available to pre-order through Indie Bound, Barnes and Noble, and Amazon.

“A fantastic resource for readers looking to grow their TBR piles.” — The Los Angeles Times

“Exciting, inspiring, intimidating, and bold.” — San Francisco Book Review

“A heartening book, granting attention to women who dared to write and ramble wild.” — BBC Countryfile

“This fine and thoughtful book puts these remarkable women writers right smack bang in to focus where they belong—as key shapers of how we see the natural world.” — James Rebanks, author of The Shepherd’s Life

“Writing Wild is an illuminating examination of voices often pushed to the side, challenging the canon of nature writing as it stands. It’s a book I’ll keep on the shelf—I’m certain I’ll return to it often.” — Buzzfeed Books

“Writing Wild re-centers and gives voice to a diversity of women naturalists and writers across time. It charts often un-heard women’s voices in naturalist writing–from long-dead women such as Dorothy Wordsworth and Gene Stratton Porter to more contemporary voices such as Gretel Ehrlich, Leslie Marmon Silko, Lauret Savoy, and Camille Dungy.” — Cultivating Place

Writing Wild celebrates 25 women who opened the door to the outside and led readers through it.” — The Jefferson Exchange

“A succinct introduction to women nature writers, this elegant compilation should have a broad reach and inspire readers to seek out more about the authors featured… Aalto writes in an easy, friendly style that makes readers feel as if they are walking the paths of these women with her.”—Library Journal

“What a joy to travel these paths alongside Kathryn Aalto and such fierce, trailblazing, and perceptive women.” — Sarah L. Kaufman, Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post critic and author of The Art of Grace

“An impassioned and illuminating anthology that serves as an act of recovery and discovery, a personal celebration, and a timely reminder of the wealth and sheer power of women’s voices.” — Rob Cowen, author of Common Ground

“Kathryn Aalto brilliantly braids engaging personal narrative with accessible literary biography, to take readers on an inspiring pilgrimage.” — Michael P. Branch, author of Rants from the Hill and How to Cuss in Western

“An amazing, rich resource that rises above visions of conquest and domination to reveal the possibility of meeting eye-to-eye with wildness, and of being broken open and changed.” —Foreword

“This book is a wonderful jumping-off point for anyone who loves the outdoors and wants to know more about the many talented female writers who have made it their work’s focus.” — BookPage

Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh COVER 3D (2)

A New York Times Best Seller

The setting for Winnie-the-Pooh’s adventures was inspired by the Ashdown Forest, a wildlife haven that spans more than 6,000 acres in southeast England. In The Natural World of Winne-the-Pooh, Kathryn Aalto explores how this diverse and atmospheric landscape inspired A. A. Milne to create the cherished tales of childhood that still resonate today.  Celebrating the intersection between literature and landscapes, the book takes readers on a journey to learn into the places, plants, and people that inspired Milne. In a delightful and visually-rich narrative — combined with E. H. Shepard’s original illustrations, historic and original colour photographs by Kathryn, and excerpts of A. A. Milne’s original stories — you will remember your childhood, learn about the collaboration between Milne and Shepard, appreciate the making of a classic book, and learn the natural and cultural history of the place that inspired it all.

Available on Amazon USAAmazon UK, Barnes & Noble and your local indies

“Beautifully written and thoroughly researched, The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh provides an intimate look into the magic and inspirations behind Milne’s stories, while reminding us of the joy children experience through nature.” — Richard Louv, author, The Nature Principle and Last Child in the Woods

The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh reminds us that the Hundred Acre Wood is quite real and very much alive. Everyone who loves Pooh and Piglet and Christopher Robin will cherish this behind-the-scenes exploration of A. A Milne’s world.” —Amy Stewart, author, The Drunken Botanist: The Plants That Create the World’s Great Drinks

“A vivid guide to the 6,000 acres of Ashdown Forest in England, a landscape celebrated by A. A. Milne and illustrator E. H. Shepard as the make-believe Hundred Acre Wood where Christopher Robin and friends had their adventures. The volume includes original illustrations along with photographs.” —The New York Times

“Aalto’s lovely book provides two great pleasures: a visit to the actual wild spots that inform the fictional Pooh world and a chance to slip into our memories of the books themselves.” — The Washington Post

“Lavishly illustrated with superb photographs as well as reproductions of the delightfully familiar Shepard illustrations. . . . an affectionate book written with enthusiasm.” — The Wall Street Journal

“This book is like a gorgeous and serene walk through the beloved Hundred Acre Wood. . . . Such a vast depth of knowledge to be found here. . . . A lovely addition to any library.” — Children’s Book Review

“An intimate guide to the forest’s history, geology, animals, colours and textures. Tantalising descriptions and photographs invite us to slow our pace, look and listen.” — BBC Wildlife Magazine

“A nostalgic read that explores the magical reality behind the fictitious world of Winnie-the-Pooh and the Hundred Acre Wood.” — Gardens Illustrated

“For anyone who has read and reread Milne’s stories, Aalto furnishes a delightful addition to these classic tales, reawakening the childlike wonder and amusement first experienced when reading the books inspired by these locations.” — Shelf Awareness Reader

“Nature enthusiasts will find much to enjoy in landscape designer and historian Kathryn Aalto’s The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh, where she discusses the Ashdown Forest, the real woodland setting where Milne’s son often wandered with his stuffed animals in tow. Parents nostalgic for a bygone era when children lost track of time playing outdoors might consider Aalto’s book a companion guide to the Pooh tales, a gentle reminder that so much of childhood is founded on magic and secret hideaway places.” — Fine Books Magazine

“This is a beautifully produced book with an unusual premise that will delight the knowledgeable landscape designer and lay reader alike. . . . Aalto’s book enriches our understanding of the world of this iconic children’s story.” — Landscape Architecture Magazine

“Kathryn Aalto has skillfully woven together the geology, geography, history and natural history of the Forest. . . . providing a travelogue, a guide, a nature spotting manual, and a nostalgic glimpse of the past, all rolled into a delightful and eminently readable book, profusely illustrated with photographs and drawings.” — The Garden Window

A limited edition book, Nature and Human Intervention details the process behind the 2011 Laurent-Perrier Chelsea Flower Show gold-medal garden, a collaboration between three acclaimed artists-garden designer Luciano Giubbilei, acclaimed Japanese architect Kengo Kuma,and sculptor Peter Randall-Page. Essays by Kathryn Aalto.

Captured in 250 colour photographs by Steve Wooster and Allan Pollock-Morris, the book shows how artists, craftsmen, and suppliers worked together to expose, highlight, and craft beauty from Nature. “We return time and again to the comfortable vocabularies, images, sounds, memories, thoughts and feelings that constitute the boundaries of our experience and expression,” says Luciano  Giubbilei. “Yet every now and then, we encounter a breakthrough moment– a rare instant when the daunting constraints of possibility melt away and when we gain the courage to focus through new lenses.”

Available from Waterstones and Luciano Giubbilei Design.