For the Media
Have you ever looked out the window of an airplane from 20,000 feet and noticed the fragmentation of the patches of land below? The land has not always been that way. In Pinhook, award-winning and bestselling author Janisse Ray reminds us that wholeness—in wilderness and in our own lives—is not only possible, but natural, even imperative.
Ray, who won the American Book Award for her memoir Ecology of a Cracker Childhood, now tells the story of South Georgia’s Pinhook Swamp, a vital pocosin, or “land between,” which connects Okefenokee Swamp with the Osceola National Forest to form the largest wild area east of the Mississippi River. In her colorful, languid prose, Ray recounts Pinhook’s tragic fragmentation, and the subsequent efforts to rewild the place; to put the wildlife corridor back together, piece by piece.
Pinhook: Finding Wholeness in a Fragmented Land is an extraordinary story of possibility and hope for all those seeking wholeness, whether through wild land conservation or through a more inward trial. In response to Ray’s first book, author Wendel Berry wrote: “Janisse Ray knows that her region's story and her own story are inseparable; in many ways they are the same story.” Now Ray weaves together the personal and natural histories of an injured but entrancing place, leaving us with a deeply inspiring story.
Designated an “important bird area” by the National Audubon Advisor, Pinhook Swamp is now the focus of restoration and rewilding efforts throughout the southeast. “It is 170,000 acres of dreary dismal,” writes Ray, “A place that holds the world together.” If our world is to hold, remote wild places must be known and revered. In Pinhook Ray powerfully testifies to this truth.
Janisse Ray is a writer, naturalist, and activist from Georgia, and is also the author of Ecology of a Cracker Childhood (Milkweed, 2000) and Wild Card Quilt (Milkweed, 2003). She won the American Book Award, the Southeastern Booksellers Association Award for Nonfiction, and the Southern Environmental Law Center Award. Ray’s first book was chosen as “The Book Every Georgian Should Read” by the Georgia Center for the book. For more information about how to reach Janisse Ray or to schedule an interview, please contact the publicity department at Chelsea Green.