NORTH STONINGTON — Author Tony Hiss, the award-winning author of "The Experience of Place," will be the guest speaker Saturday at a virtual event sponsored by North Stonington's Wheeler Library and Bank Square Books.

Hiss will discuss his new book, "Rescuing the Planet: Protecting Half the Land to Heal the Earth," which has been described as "an urgent, resounding call to protect 50 percent of the earth's land by 2050, thereby saving millions of its species, and a candid assessment of the health of our planet and our role in conserving it."

Hiss, who was a staff writer at The New Yorker for more than 30 years, was a visiting scholar at New York University for 25 years and has lectured around the world, has written his latest book in an effort to help counter climate change.

Beginning in the vast North American Boreal Forest that stretches through Canada, and roving across the continent, from the Northern Sierra to Alabama's Paint Rock Forest, from the Appalachian Trail to a ranch in Mexico, Hiss sets out on a journey to take stock of the "superorganism" that is the earth: its land, its elements, its plants and animals, its greatest threats.

Hiss tells readers what we can do to keep the earth — and ourselves — alive. He not only invites readers to understand the scope and gravity of the problems we face, but also makes the case for why protecting half the land is the way to fix those problems.

Hiss highlights the important work of the many groups already involved in this fight, such as the Indigenous Leadership Initiative, the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative, and the global animal-tracking project ICARUS. He also introduces readers to the engineers, geologists, biologists, botanists, oceanographers, ecologists, and other "Half-Earthers" — like Hiss himself — who are allied in their dedication to the unifying, essential cause of saving our own planet from ourselves.

The book has been called "tender, impassioned, curious, and above all else inspiring ... a work that promises to make all of us better citizens of the earth."

The event, which is free, will include an author talk and an Q&A session. Registration is required. 

— Nancy Burns-Fusaro

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