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Orwell's Roses by Rebecca Solnit

Orwell's Roses

Best Seller
Orwell's Roses by Rebecca Solnit
Hardcover $28.00
Oct 19, 2021 | ISBN 9780593083369

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  • Oct 19, 2021 | ISBN 9780593083369

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Praise

Advance praise for Orwell’s Roses:

“Just when you think are you sick of hearing about George Orwell, Solnit reveals a surprising side. Orwell was a passionate gardener, and especially enjoyed flowers. Solnit uses fresh insight to illuminate an absorbing meditation on Orwell’s work as a writer and antifascist.”
The Millions

“A kaleidoscopic view of a man we thought we knew, by a woman who keeps surprising us with her dazzling mind.  Solnit has written an exquisitely layered book soaring in its reach, subversive in its scope, and joyous in its pleasure to read.  Her exploration into how and why cultivating beauty matters, alongside fighting injustices as Orwell’s garden supported his fierce critique of fascism, reminds us of the singular fact: life is both flower and thorn. This profound and graceful book not only redefines what is ‘Orwellian,’ it reimagines how we might live a life of greater intention by opening our hearts to what is beautiful, brave, and of Earth.”
—Terry Tempest Williams, author of Erosion

“Solnit shows that Orwell’s politics were grounded in a vision of the good life that he conducted with gusto through some of the worst decades of the twentieth century.  This was partly his nature and partly his political project; along with his famous lessons about the misuse of political language and power, he wanted people to understand that the life of a democratic socialist could and should include joy, as an already existing example of what might happen if we made a better world.  A beautiful and important book.”
Kim Stanley Robinson, author of The Ministry for the Future
 
“What a book! It is a privilege for the rest of us to listen in as our finest contemporary essayist engages in deep conversation across time with perhaps the greatest essayist in the history of the language. This volume is humane, challenging–and a reminder that we all must, and can, make a life on this beautiful planet, even as we work to improve it.”
Bill McKibben, author of Falter:  Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out?
 
“We all know what Orwell hated but Solnit pays attention to what he loved. Orwell’s Roses is an ingeniously fresh and unpredictable take on his life and times, and the values he held dear.”
Dorian Lynskey, author of The Ministry of Truth: A Biography of George Orwell’s 1984

“This book is brilliant because it is true, and because it rescues Orwell from a kind of dourness and seriousness, and gives him back his humanity and yes, his Englishness.”
James Rebanks, author of The Shepherd’s Life

“[Solnit] has a knack for making surprising and poignant connections between seemingly disparate things . . . [Orwell’s Roses is] another expansive look at politics, power, beauty, and the stories we tell ourselves.”
LitHub

“Elegant . . . muses on Orwell with all Rebecca Solnit’s luminous intelligence and trademark optimism. If ‘Orwellian’ has become synonymous with darkness and oppression, she opens up his life affirming love of gardening, of wild nature and life’s physical pleasure, his antidote to the grim puritanism of ideologues”
The Guardian
 
“There is nothing more political than a garden, and Rebecca Solnit brings Orwell’s life and writing vividly alive through his quiet determination to love the surface of the earth. Orwell’s Roses shows how intimately aesthetics is intertwined with ethics, and in doing so, Solnit has given us a truly beautiful book.”
—Alex Christofi, author of Dostoevsky in Love

“We all know what Orwell hated, but Solnit pays attention to what he loved. Orwell’s Roses is an ingeniously fresh and unpredictable take on his life and times, and the values he held dear.”
—Dorian Lynskey, author of The Ministry of Truth: A Biography of George Orwell’s 1984

“This book unfolds like the petals of a rose—the political rose, the personal rose—and enacts its subject in the ethics of its beauty and the grace of its resistance.” 
—Jay Griffiths, author of Why Rebel

“This book is brilliant because it is true, and because it rescues Orwell from a kind of dourness and seriousness, and gives him back his humanity and yes, his Englishness.” 
—James Rebanks, author of The Shepherd’s Life and English Pastoral

“This is an enchanting book, as powerful in its arguments as it is enjoyable to read. From a surprising close-up of George Orwell planting three Woolworth roses, Solnit pans to a bracing new vista of the man and his fierce political aesthetic, taking in the injustices of the rose industry and lying Soviet science as she goes. Brilliant.”
—Lisa Appignanesi, author of Mad, Bad, and Sad

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