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Meetings with Remarkable Mushrooms: Forays with Fungi across Hemispheres (Hardcover)

Meetings with Remarkable Mushrooms: Forays with Fungi across Hemispheres By Alison Pouliot Cover Image
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A whirlwind journey through fungus frontiers that underscores how appreciating fungi is key to understanding our planet’s power and fragility.

What can we learn from the lives of fungi? Splitting time between the northern and southern hemispheres, ecologist Alison Pouliot ensures that she experiences two autumns per year in the pursuit of fungi—from Australia’s deserts to Iceland’s glaciers to America’s Cascade Mountains. In Meetings with Remarkable Mushrooms, we journey alongside Pouliot, magnifiers in hand, as she travels the world.

With Pouliot as our guide, we smell fire-loving truffles that transform their scent after burning to lure mammals who eat them and, ultimately, spread their spores. We spot the eerie glow of the ghost fungus, a deceptive entity that looks like an edible oyster mushroom but will soon heave back out—along with everything else in your stomach—if you take a bite. And we crawl alongside vegetable caterpillars, which are neither vegetable nor caterpillar but a fungus that devours insects from the inside out.

Featuring stunning color photographs of these mycological miracles, Meetings with Remarkable Mushrooms shows that understanding fungi is fundamental for harmonizing with the natural world.

About the Author

Alison Pouliot is an ecologist and photographer with a passion for fungi.

Praise For…

"In this captivating study, ecologist Pouliot expounds on mushrooms she’s encountered during her fieldwork....The result is an enjoyable tour of the fungal kingdom."
— Publisher's Weekly

"As Pouliot wryly describes her companions and their forays into forests, the fungi that inhabit them emerge as her protagonists….Attending also to the prominent women (including Beatrix Potter) who helped found mycology as a science and fungi’s place in habitat conservation, Pouliot delivers a charming, informative presentation of a world beneath our feet."
— Booklist

"[Pouliot makes a] convincing case . . . Fungi are essential to the world as we know it."
— New York Review of Books

"In this book, [Pouliot] takes us with her all over the world as she brings fungi to life with lush descriptions, infectious enthusiasm, and gorgeous pictures. But she also shows the reader just how important fungi are to the natural world, as well as what they do for humans."
— Book Riot

"Meetings with Remarkable Mushrooms is an information-packed, entertaining read that also has gorgeous color photos of fungi. Pouliot takes the reader on an adventure in both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres...learning about these mysterious mycological wonders and the roles they play in our ecological systems."
— Jaime Herndon

"Conveying an impassioned message for conservation and awareness, Meetings with Remarkable Mushrooms is a compelling, enlightening look at lowly but remarkable fungi that are often hidden in the shadows."
— Foreword Reviews

"Pouliot’s book is invaluable for reasons that far exceed the entertaining mycological-grand-tour theme. The real essence of the book lies in its impassioned argument for fungal conservation. . . .Pouliot’s arguments for conservation unfold by way of several quite original, non-technological, extra-scientific approaches."
— Mycophile Quarterly

"So—do we really need another book about mushrooms? The answer is yes, but only if it’s this one. Alison Pouliot has written a lovely book that digs deep but wears its learning lightly, and manages to cover—in a series of relatively short, readable, enjoyable and accurate chapters—most of the important issues in popular mycology."
— Fungi

“Pouliot is a mycologist whose knowledge of fungi is extraordinarily vast and intricate.”
— The Saturday Paper

“I was entertained and enthralled reading this book and I promise I have never read a book from cover to cover on fungi before. I didn't think it was my jam, but [it turns out] it should be everyone's jam. Fungi is literally the glue that keeps us together.”
— Readings

“Pouliot conveys the otherworldly charisma of mushrooms with love and skill.” 
— The Sydney Morning Herald

“Powerful stuff, which should be read by all those who continue to support the insane logging of our native forests.”
— Jonathan Watts | author and environmental activist

"This subterranean journey introduces the quirks of behavior that allow fungi to spread through soils, support living plants, and recycle the debris of nature. Alison is an accomplished storyteller."
— Nicholas P. Money | Miami University

"[Meetings with Remarkable Mushrooms] is a joy to read." 
— Sophie Cunningham | author of "City of Trees"

"Sensual and scientific. Dazzling and boundary breaking. [Meetings with Remarkable Mushrooms] will make you see the world anew."
— Long Litt Woon | author of "The Way Through the Woods"

"The world of fungi is our world even if we don’t know it and can’t see most of it—strange, dazzling, spooky, unpredictable, friendly, deadly, sly. And Alison is the perfect guide. She surprises and informs, delights and warns; makes you wish you could walk with her and her passionate companions. That’s OK. In this book you do."
— Paul Kelly | songwriter

"An evocative, accessible and important book about one of the most vital, yet hugely ignored, kingdoms on our planet—fungi. After reading this you cannot help but see the world in a different light—and should approach mushrooms and truffles with new relish."
— Charles Massy | author of "Call of the Reed Warbler"

"Anyone who has joined Alison in a forest, anywhere in the world, will know her incredible ability to magnify those microscopic organisms that hold our natural world together, to connect every element of human life—physical, emotional or social—to the function of our natural landscapes. [Meetings with Remarkable Mushrooms] is like a walk in the forest, pungent and complex, filled with curiosity and wonder, and leaving you with a sense that there is so much more to uncover."
— Millie Ross | ABC-TV "Gardening Australia"

"The underground teaches us a different language—and Alison Pouliot is the perfect translator."
— Toby Kiers | Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

"[Meetings with Remarkable Mushrooms] takes storytelling about fungi to a captivating new level. A well-researched page turner."
— Anders Dahlberg | Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences

Product Details
ISBN: 9780226829630
ISBN-10: 0226829634
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication Date: September 5th, 2023
Pages: 320
Language: English