Outlandish: Walking Europe’s Unlikely Landscapes – Nick Hunt

This is a very peculiar book. One I savored for a long while, because it’s fascinating, both in concept and in storytelling. Did you know that there’s a glacier tucked away in Scotland? Or a desert in Spain? I was aware about the latter, and of course the existence of the Hungarian steppe is common knowledge, but the glacier stumped me. Same with the Białowieża, a primeval Polish forest. 

Under Western Skies: Visionary Gardens from the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific Coast – J. Jewell, C. Atkinson

Under Western Skies, written by Jennifer Jewell, is an ode to plant diversity. Together with photographer Caitlin Atkinson, Jewell covers the whole Western area, from the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific Coast, interviewing landscapers and horticulturists, artists and gardners. Each of them opened up their house--or sanctuary, or park, or--and talked about the places they shaped up with time and patience.

Castles of the World – Phyllis G. Jestice

CotW, written by Phyllis G. Jestice, is a visual travel among castles. From the oldest, built to withstand actual attacks, to the modern and more decorative ones, Jestice put together an informative book, filled with pictures and cultural tidbits. It might be a niche topic, but it sure is interesting. Built atop of hills, surrounded by moats, sometimes only reachable by boat, in the general imaginary they’re a stronghold; visiting them, even by proxy, feels like taking a step in the past.

Bees: Heroes of the Garden – Tom Jackson

Did you know that ‘bee’ is a very generic term, encompassing 20k different species? Did you know that social bees are just a small fraction of a broader group of insects? Did you know that their only source of food is nectar and pollen? There are many misconceptions regarding bees, and this book helps setting them straight.