Air: The Restless Shaper of the World

by William Bryant Logan

By Janet Raloff, 12:51 PM November 1, 2012

It’s what we breathe. On the move, it brings wind and weather. As it vibrates, it communicates sound. It’s hard to imagine a facet of life in which air is not a prime player. That’s Logan’s thesis, and he has constructed a veritable symphony of variations on it.

An arborist by profession and aviator by avocation, Logan takes readers from the soil, through plant roots, into the near surface air and then on up above the clouds. In most instances, the transitions work — if not seamlessly, at leas...

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