Man-Made Ecological Disasters
The world has seen its share of human-made ecological disasters in the recent past. We witnessed the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. We know about the devastating effects of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster and that areas continued problems. There are certainly others.
But what many consider to be the worst man-made ecological disaster of American history is rarely mentioned at all. Can you guess what it might be?
The Dust Bowl of the 1930s drove millions of people from the Great Plains and ought to be a reminder to us all about our relationship to the land. The severe drought combined with poor farming techniques allowed for enormous “black blizzards” and “black rollers” to destroy livelihoods and agriculture. Sixty mile per hour winds with the power to strip the paint off cars piled into drifts like snow against homes, caused dust pneumonia which was often fatal, and wreaked havoc across the country.
In every big story there are thousands of individual stories to be told. Coyote Winds is a fictional account of The Dust Bowl through the lens of a modern teenage boy and the stories and legacy of his grandfather’s experiences left to him.
The new novel by Helen Sedwick is based on her father’s experiences of growing up on the prairie. The novel paints an intimate picture of an unfenced boyhood and the spirit which drew people to this rugged land and explores how that spirit survived when faced with obstacles such as drought and The Great Depression. It is also a morality tale about our relationship to the land that sustains us—a lesson we ignore at our peril and that we need to learn, again and again.
A young adult historical novel for all, Coyote Winds is a gripping personal tale of one family’s experience living during those turbulent years and that legacy that is passed on through the generations. It had me questioning our collective American dream throughout. When do our dreams cause more harm than good? The Dust Bowl is certainly an example.
Coyote Winds is going live on March 8th with a book signing by the author, Helen Sedwick, at Copperfield’s Books in Santa Rosa at 7p.m. If you are near Santa Rosa, California, I would highly recommend attending!
What are questions that come up for you about The Dust Bowl?
Do you believe the pursuance of the American dream affects our relationship to the land, to nature?
Would you like to read Coyote Winds?
I was sent a copy of the book for my sponsored review. My opinions are my own as they can never be bought.