Cover image for Desert solitaire
Desert solitaire
Publication Information:
Tucson : University of Arizona Press, ©1988.
Physical Description:
xiii, 238 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
The first morning -- Solitaire -- The serpents of paradise -- Cliffrose and bayonets -- Polemic : industrial tourism and the national parks -- Rocks -- Cowboys and Indians -- Cowboys and Indians Part II -- Water -- The heat of noon : rock and tree and cloud -- The moon-eyed horse -- Down the river -- Havasu -- The dead man at Grandview Point -- Tukuhnikivats, the island in the desert -- Episodes and visions -- Terra incognita : into the maze -- Bedrock and paradox.
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In celebration of the twentieth anniversary of the publication of Desert Solitaire, the University of Arizona Press is pleased to publish a new edition featuring a new introduction by the author, his definitive corrections to the text, and new illustrations commissioned exclusively for this volume. Edward Abbey's account of two summers spent in southeastern Utah's canyonlands is surely one of the most enduring works of contemporary American nature writing. In it he tells of his stint as a park ranger at Arches National Monument, of his love for the natural beauty that surrounded him, and of his distaste for the modernizing improvements designed to increase visitation to the park. "II confess to being a nature lover," admits Abbey more than thirty years after his sojourn in the wilderness. "But I did not mean to be mistaken for a nature writer. I never wanted to be anything but a writer, period." First published in 1968 to "a few brief but not hostile notices," Desert Solitaire quietly sold out of its first printing but eventually developed a loyal enough following in paperback to earn Abbey the "nature writer" label he claims never to have wanted. Desert Solitaire lives on because it is a work that reflects profound love of nature and a bitter abhorrence of all that would desecrate it.