A Northern Front by John Hildebrand
New and Selected Essays

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In places as remote as Alaska's north slope and as familiar as a midwestern family farm there are tensions that exist between nature and the people who define a given land as home. People drawn to the wilderness are often moved to save it or resist it, depending on their desire for adventure or comfort, tradition or change, sustainability or profit. In sixteen elegant essays, award-winning writer and naturalist John Hildebrand takes a clear-eyed look at how these forces move and change the people and the land. Hildebrand writes of landscapes in dispute: Native Alaskan groups are pitted against each other over oil development, Hmong emigrants jostle locals in a public hunting ground, farmers battle a formidable company town and city hall. Nature itself is also in flux as timber wolves and sandhill cranes reclaim lost ground and a marine biologist gauges the effect of an invading species on previously undisturbed areas. A Northern Front reflects the day-by-day disappearance of wild places and the ever-changing face of the American landscape. Hildebrand's characters are unforgettable, and his stories gracefully capture the spirit of all people who care deeply about the land.

About John Hildebrand

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John Hildebrand's nonfiction has appeared in Harper's Magazine, Audubon, Outside, Sports Illustrated, Harrowsmith, and The Missouri Review. He is the author of Mapping the Farm: The Chronicle of a Family (Minnesota Historical Society Press) and Reading the River: A Voyage Down the Yukon. He teaches at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and has recently built a cabin in northern Wisconsin.
Published May 1, 2005 by Borealis Books. 192 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Nature & Wildlife, Travel, Literature & Fiction, Science & Math. Non-fiction

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On California’s Pacific Coast Highway, he mourns our passing from a country of travel-hungry Jack Kerouacs to sedentary Garrison Keillors, now willingly tethered to our “hometowns.” Indeed, whether uncovering Laotian exiles in Minnesota or ancient Indians in the Alaskan Wildlife Refuge, Hildebran...

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