A Private Wilderness by Sigurd F. Olson


A Private Wilderness shares an inside look at beloved naturalist Sigurd Olson’s life. Olson aspired to be an environmentalist, conservationist, and nature writer. The book uses journal entries from Olson himself to share his thoughts, struggles, and emotions. Passion bleeds from the entries as Olson describes his love for nature.


“Do not forget that communion with nature is communion with one’s soul” (Olson).


Despite pining for an author's life, Sigurd Olson was forced to take environmental jobs that did not satiate his desire to write. Nevertheless, the journal entries showcase his writing talent and passion for growing as a writer. Olson mentions various nature writers for inspiration and expresses his admiration. The authors fuel Olson to become the best writer he can be.


Despite a personal insight into the mind of Sigurd Olson, the book is at times dull. Most of the entries are typical day-to-day thoughts that I felt the urge to skip. I would have like to see more about the man himself. Perhaps, the publisher could have added biographical information between entries to give the reader a better sense of who Olson was. Still, if you are a fan of nature authors or environmentalism A Private Wilderness is an interesting read.


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