Simon & Schuster
Leave it as it is
A Journey Through Theodore Roosevelt’s American Wilderness
Bestselling author David Gessner’s wilderness road trip inspired by America’s greatest conservationist, Theodore Roosevelt, is “a rallying cry in the age of climate change” (Robert Redford).
“Leave it as it is,” Theodore Roosevelt announced while viewing the Grand Canyon for the first time. “The ages have been at work on it and man can only mar it.” Roosevelt’s pronouncement signaled the beginning of an environmental fight that still wages today. To reconnect with the American wilderness and with the president who courageously protected it, acclaimed nature writer and New York Times bestselling author David Gessner embarks on a great American road trip guided by Roosevelt’s crusading environmental legacy.
Gessner travels to the Dakota badlands where Roosevelt awakened as a naturalist; to Yellowstone, Yosemite, and the Grand Canyon where Roosevelt escaped during the grind of his reelection tour; and finally, to Bears Ears, Utah, a monument proposed by Native Tribes that is currently embroiled in a national conservation fight. Along the way, Gessner questions and reimagines Roosevelt’s vision for today’s lands.
“Insightful, observant, and wry,” (BookPage) Leave It As It Is offers an arresting history of Roosevelt’s pioneering conservationism, a powerful call to arms, and a profound meditation on our environmental future.
Book Reviews For Leave It As It Is
“A rallying cry in the age of climate change.” — Robert Redford
“As we face environmental dangers unimagined in Roosevelt’s day, Mr. Gessner asks what TR would do with our surviving wilderness. The impassioned response: Leave it as it is.” — Wall Street Journal
“The most engaging and powerful book about Western public lands that I have read in a long time. If you are not already in the fight. . . read this book and you will be inspired to get to work.” — National Parks Traveler
“Writing with his heart on his well-traveled sleeve and a laser focus on the stunning beauty of the parks, Gessner shares an epic road trip through these storied lands.” — BookPage
“A scholar-with-swagger, Gessner’s as comfortable cracking a beer along a hiking trail as he is quoting from the Antiquities Act of 1906. The result is an earnest, knowledgeable, and straight-shooting guide, one whom readers can’t help but feel close to as he links Roosevelt’s America with our own.” — Terrain.org
“Passionate and timely . . . a brilliant exploration of Teddy Roosevelt’s life and love of nature, and a wickedly wonderful read.” — Jennifer Ackerman, author of The Genius of Birds and The Bird Way
“This combination of environmental journalism, biography, and travelog introduces fascinating characters who will engage readers of environmental literature as well as Roosevelt enthusiasts.”
— Library Journal
“As a nature writer and teacher, Gessner is a wonderful guide.” — Mountain Journal
“An excellent look at the origins of environmentalism and an inspiring call to build upon what Roosevelt and other early environmentalists started.” — Publishers Weekly