In The Accidental Reef and Other Ecological Odysseys in the Great Lakes, Lynne Heasley illuminates an underwater world that, despite a ferocious industrial history, remains wondrous and worthy of care. From its first scene in a benighted Great Lakes river, where lake sturgeon thrash and spawn, this powerful book takes readers on journeys through the Great Lakes, alongside fish and fishers, scuba divers and scientists, toxic pollutants and threatened communities, oil pipelines and invasive species, Indigenous peoples and federal agencies. With dazzling illustrations from Glenn Wolff, the book helps us know the Great Lakes in new ways and grapple with the legacies and alternative futures that come from their abundance of natural wealth. Suffused with curiosity, empathy, and wit, The Accidental Reef will not fail to astonish and inspire.
In The Accidental Reef, Lynne Heasley has done something extraordinary: she has woven together threads from fisheries ecology, environmental humanities, and literary nonfiction into a multifaceted tapestry illuminating the Great Lakes. Heasley explores the ways that biological dramas collide with ecological, historical, and cultural transformations. Her arguments are intelligent, surprising, and provocative, and her writing is lyrical, offering us new insights on the watery creatures that make their homes in the Great Lakes.—Nancy Langston, distinguished professor of environmental history, Michigan Technological University, and author of Climate Ghosts: Migratory Species in the Anthropocene
Science and art are human attempts to understand and describe the world around us. In The Accidental Reef, Lynne Heasley has used science, history, and literary arts to create a sense of wonder for an obscure reef in the St. Clair River and the Great Lakes. Heasley leads a reader to see, know, and understand these freshwater seas from different perspectives—ones that are essential to developing a stewardship ethic.—John H. Hartig, visiting scholar, Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research, University of Windsor, and author of Waterfront Porch: Reclaiming Detroit's Industrial Waterfront as a Gathering Place for All
Uber-attuned to landscapes both inner and outer, The Accidental Reef gives life and voice to a marginalized body of water. In this immersive hybrid, Lynne Heasley nets all perspectives, even slipping beneath the surface of the Great Lakes to illuminate the myriad relationships that comprise a watershed.—Chris Dombrowski, author of Body of Water: A Sage, a Seeker, and the World’s Most Alluring Fish
Lynne Heasley’s The Accidental Reef offers a fresh perspective on the state of the Great Lakes. Based on thorough research and carried by lush writing, it is one of the best Great Lakes books of our era.—Dave Dempsey, author of Great Lakes for Sale: From Whitecaps to Bottlecaps and On the Brink: The Great Lakes in the 21st Century