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The Amazon in the
Age of Globalization

By Mark London and
Brian Kelly

Random House


click on the cover.


[authors' note]

Nearly 25 years after publishing our groundbreaking book, Amazon, we have returned from this critical environmental frontier with a new report. The Last Forest: The Amazon in the Age of Globalization is a myth-puncturing book based on first-hand reporting that takes a hard look at both the risks and rewards of man's incursion into the last great rainforest on earth.

As journalists who were among the first people to describe the conquest of the Amazon, we now explore the high stakes conflict between the need to preserve much of this fragile ecosystem and the mounting world-wide pressures to develop its resources. Please help us spread the word - The Last Forest is your forest!

Mark London and Brian Kelly


"The Last Forest makes an important contribution to the literature on the Amazon basin. The authors take pains to present the Brazilian side of the international controversy over the destruction of the rain forest and find positive signs in the ways Brazilians have been laboring to reconcile economic growth and environmental protection. The critical question, to be answered over the next 25 years, is whether this response can overcome past mistakes." --Joseph A. Page, Miami Herald, February 18, 2007

"When two young journalists, Mark London and Brian Kelly, traveled to Brazil in 1980 to write their first book about the Amazon, three percent of the rain forest had already been lost. When they returned 25 years later, 20 percent was gone. The question that remains, and that lies at the heart of London and Kelly's thought-provoking new book, The Last Forest, is: Can the Amazon be saved? The authors' answer is one of confident optimism: "It is not too late." The solutions to deforestation, however, are nearly as complex as the rain forest itself." --Candice Millard, Washington Post Book World, February 25, 2007

"A truly riveting narrative. Highly recommended." --scienceagogo.com

[advance praise]

“Mark London and Brian Kelly were among the first journalists to draw the world's attention to the Amazon Basin—the earth's greatest forest, and arguably its most important environmental battleground. Their book, simply called Amazon, published 25 years ago, warned that what was happening in the remote South American forest would have serious consequences for us all. Now, in an era of globalization, climate change and genetic engineering, they return to the Amazon—and find that it is utterly different from how the region is usually portrayed. Adventurous, smart, and indefatigably curious, London and Kelly have painted an indelible picture of a place in the throes of change—changes that will affect the entire planet.” —Charles C. Mann, author of 1491: New Revelations of the Americas before Columbus

“In a superb work of journalism, London and Kelly profile environmentalists, politicians, ranchers, and ordinary citizens; shrewdly consider the impact of new roads and wireless technology; and chronicle the ongoing destruction of forests and displacement of forest people to make way for cattle ranches and soybean fields. Appalling stories about corruption, the illegal logging, bloodshed over land titles, and murdered activists abound.” --Booklist

“An incisive, information-packed update on man and nature in our greatest rainforest.” --Kirkus, starred review

“The conventional wisdom is that the Amazon River basin and the unique flora and fauna of its fecund rainforests—half of the remaining forest on earth—are on the brink of ecological disaster. Not necessarily so, say the authors of this combination of wonkish policy paper, astute reporting and firsthand adventure narrative, who revisited Brazil's forested middle provinces 25 years after writing their first book, Amazon.” --Publishers Weekly

[London and Kelly] offer the unvarnished story of Brazil’s coming to grips with the utilization vs. the preservation of its natural resources…. This is an essential read for environmentalists, historians, economists, and those who are just awestruck by the Amazon’s ecosystem.
--Library Journal, starred review

"Mark London and Brian Kelly have done it again! The Last Forest is a thought-provoking and insightful book on the Amazon that deserves a place of honor on the bookshelves of everyone from field biologists to economic planners to armchair travelers to anyone who enjoys a great read." —Mark Plotkin, Ph.D, author of Tales of a Shaman's Apprentice

“As the heart of the world's greatest wilderness is pierced ever more deeply and the forces of responsibility and destruction struggle for its future, adventure journalists London and Kelly return for first hand understanding. A grand saga that puts a human face on this epic story about the fate of the Amazon.” —Tom Lovejoy, President, The Heinz Center for Science, Economics and the Environment



[in the news]

New video of the Amazon's legendary pink dolphins

Read the excerpt in US News and World Report

See the slide show at US News and World Report

Mark London is interviewed by O Estado de S Paulo, January 14, 2007 (pdf, 187k, in Portuguese)

US News & World Report: Home on the Tropical Range

New York Times: Bright Spots in the Rain Forest


To schedule an event or media appearance click here.

Thursday,April 12
Lecture at Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences
Duke University
4 p.m.

Book signing
Quail Ridge Books
Raleigh NC
7 p.m.

Thursday, April 26
Panel Discussion
Brazilian Business Council on Sustainable Development Congress
Sao Paulo, Brazil
2 p.m.




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