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The Nature of Japan

by Elliott Samuels

Staff Writer

The title of longtime Japan Times columnist Mark Brazil’s collection of essays sells itself a little short, for “The Nature of Japan” is less about identifying the web of life that inhabits this archipelago as it is about offering an insightful peek into the Japanese relationship with the great outdoors.

The Nature of Japan, by Mark Brazil.
Japan Nature Guides, Nonfiction.

Brazil has interacted with all manner of creatures during copious expeditions across the country over the past 30 years, and he uses all 380 pages of this book to deliver a fascinating account of some of his more memorable experiences. He also discusses certain changes in environmental impact and biodiversity that he has observed, inspiring us to remember that the wildlife around us should not be taken for granted.