Growing restless in middle age, Pocock, a Canadian writer and journalist, packs up her husband and daughter, and heads to Montana, looking for…she’s not sure. Trying to find meaning in an increasingly complicated world, she sets out to investigate the modern West, and ends up spending time with people across the spectrum: ranchers, militia members, anti-government wolf trappers, Native-American “rewilders,” spiritual leaders, red-state liberals, sexologists, and even other moms just trying to raise their kids the best they know how. As a sort-of foreigner (I mean, how foreign is Canada, really?), she’s able to both understand the West and offer fresh insight on the country and region we call home. —Rico— From Surrender: The Call of the American West by Joanna Pocock
In the style of Barry Lopez, Annie Dillard, and Eula Biss, Surrender explores the changing landscape of the American West and the radical environmental movements that have taken root in response to the increasingly urgent climate crisis.
Blending personal memoir with insightful reportage and vivid nature writing, award-winning author and essayist Joanna Pocock investigates the changing landscape of the West and the radical environmental movements that have taken root in the Mountain States. She witnesses the annual tribal bison hunt near Yellowstone National Park, where she meets a scavenger community honing ancestral skills. She joins Finisia Medrano, a transgender rewilder who for many years has been living on the "hoop," following her food source by seasonal migration. She attends the Ecosex Convergence -- an annual gathering of people who place their relationship with the earth above everything else -- and attends a workshop led by Reverend Teri Ciacchi, a sexologist, priestess of Aphrodite, and holistic spiritual healer in the Living Love Revolution Church.
Surrender is a keen and compelling examination of the outsider eco-cultures blossoming in the new American West in an era of increasing climatic disruption, rising sea levels, animal extinctions, melting glaciers, and catastrophic wildfires.