Richard Powers and The Overstory

By Ann Shayne
April 20, 2019

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21 Comments
  • Yes! “The Overstory” is wonderful. Highly recommended if you care at all about nature, and especially if you don’t. Powers has written a number of other excellent novels, too.

    • I’m wading through this book at the moment, but finding the second half a bit of a struggle. However, he is an original story teller and I don’t usually give up easily, The Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohllbelen is about trees as social beings which feel pain, communicate and look after each other. A non fiction work, this guy spent years hanging out in a forest and writes about what he learned.

  • More often than not I sign up for e-newsletters and email lists and soon thereafter become bored with the lack of good content and “swipe left” to delete without ever opening them. That is certainly never the case with MDK! I look forward to the daily emails and weekend Snippets; they are two of the very few emails that I actually save and read. I have discovered some wonderful books, movies/videos and music not to mention the wealth of knitting patterns and technical information. Thank you for investing the time and care to deliver the rich content that arrives daily in my inbox!

    • Exactly.

    • You said it, I have thought exactly that many times. Thanks for the wealth of information, the connection to the craft, and I am still smiling at last year’s April 1 instructions on how to seam a blanket.

    • So very true – I feel exactly the same way. Thanks for all you do, Ann and Kay!

      • Absolutely agree!

    • Well said, Debbie!

  • Thanks for that wonderful tip on what seems to be a novel written almost as a work of poetry. I can’t wait to listen to it—preferably outside, under a tree, with a basket of knitting beside me. I always look forward to reading your newsletters which, like “The Overstory”, are so much more than the simple term “newsletter” would imply.

  • It is a wonderful book. I have always loved trees and now I understand why. I no longer feel foolish talking to them and touching them gently.

  • I read lots of novels, but “Overstory” is one of the very few that fundamentally changed the way I look at the world. I found it astounding and unusual. Gave it to several friends for Christmas/Chanukah, and at least one of them felt the same way.

  • I almost skipped this. Environmentalism. Trees. It didn’t sound all that interesting. As I scrolled back to the top something made me hit “play.” As the author read the first page and a half of husband novel I was taken aback. I was mesmerized. As I listened to the interview I had a mental shift. A drawing in. A deeper perspective. Kudos to MDK! And gratitude for blessing your readers. Many thanks.

  • I’ve been spinning away this morning while listening, learning from the author and anticipating getting my hands on this intriguing book.

  • Has anybody seen Dame Judi Dench’s Netflix film on trees? It is so wonderful.

    • Yes, I saw it recently on PBS…wonderful!

  • I first heard this book mentioned in the MDK comments by, I think, Judy Welles. The characters have stayed in my head for many months since reading it.

  • thanks so much! really enriching video and looking forward to reading the book. now, back to knitting.

  • Wow
    I feel so much gratitude for your recommendations! And this one is my favorite. Like other knitters commented, l too feel such a strong connection to trees and plants. I was so embarrassed when I had to actually hug a tree at age 27.
    I try not to look too weird but trees invite me to commune. I feel so honored.

  • The Overstory is a moving work…you wont look at trees the same way again..even if you are already s lover of trees as am I. I took it out from myv local library..it was a staff pick at Elting Memorial Library in New Paltz.

  • You absolutely should read it — it’s a phenomenal book, and very much deserving of the Pulitzer. It was one of my favorite reads last year and is now probably one of my favorite books ever. You will never look at trees the same way again.

  • Thank you so much for the link to this expansive, intelligent interview.