“I spent the last two years writing a nonfiction book about climate change, so most of my reading has been on that subject,” says the author, whose past books have tackled everything from the history of Jews in Ukraine to the food that we eat. Along the lines of Foer’s newest, We Are the Weather: Saving the Planet Begins at Breakfast, out on September 17 from Farrar, Straus and Giroux, are four books that, “despite the gravity of their concerns, were something like ‘fun.’”
Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming, by Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway
Merchants of Doubt is an engrossing and infuriating account of how the public has been misled by a small group of scientists motivated by corporate and political interests. You’ll want to throw the book across the room even as you tear through the pages of the riveting story it tells. It would pair well with Nathaniel Rich’s Losing Earth, a heartbreaking account of how we have allowed global warming to happen.
Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming, edited by Paul Hawken
This is a surprisingly peppy read. The way that it breaks down information—conceptually and graphically—reminded me of one of my all-time favorite books, The Works: Anatomy of a City. Drawdown is as comprehensive as its title suggests, and as William Kennedy (or someone) said of One Hundred Years of Solitude (or some great novel): It “should be required reading for the entire human race.”
Inconspicuous Consumption: The Environmental Impact You Don’t Know You Have, by Tatiana Schlossberg
Inconspicuous Consumption breaks down how our daily choices create and destroy the world. It challenged me quite personally, but in a way that felt inspiring rather than annoying.
Six Degrees: Our Future on a Hotter Planet, by Mark Lynas
This will scare the shit out of you, and make it impossible ever to sleep again. I highly recommend it.