MixedIrish Times (IRE)Losing Eden takes an attentive look at a particular iteration of our condition under the anthropocene: our disconnect from the living world, and the effect this has on our mental health. In meticulous detail, Jones quests to bring us an impressive array of answers to the question of whether \'nature connection\' has a tangible effect on our minds ... Her results are compelling ... This book will convince you that nature is an intrinsic part of ourselves ... I found myself wanting more of the good stuff, wishing the \'numinous\' Jones finds in nature had suffused the text more. She moves a little stiffly between enquiry and illustrative prose ... Jones is at best when she touches the wonder in the living world that is of crucial importance to her quest, but her astonishment sometimes doesn’t quiver through ... This is a book you read if you still need convincing, although it is so thorough that it is also sure to fill any gaps in anyone’s knowledge, and fix itself as a handy reference compendium for the bookshelf, a doorstop of studies to throw at people telling you time spent in the living world is an indulgence.
RaveThe Irish Times (IRE)The question that the book poses concerns more than just whales. It is demonstrative of the fact that within the whale, both archetype and, painfully, the material bodies of actual whales, is matter with which to divine the whole world. This book is an act of divination: Giggs reads the debris as tea leaves ... deftly presents the chronology of whales as oil, of whales for whales’ sake, to the wider environmental ethic that arose from the anti-whaling campaigns of the 1970s ... As well as being dazzlingly well researched and conveyed, the language in Fathoms is wonderful in that it never becomes sentimental and yet is thoroughly moving. Combining reportage, cultural criticism and poem as a call to action in the spirit of Rachel Carson, Giggs is an assured new voice in narrative non-fiction ... Gloriously, she presents whales as poets ... We need to be moved – therein the particular power of literature to expand the parameters of our compassion. Can you feel compassion for whale lice? For the fleas that live behind whale’s baleens? I’ll bet you can, reading this book. From within and in proximity to the whale, Fathoms expands also towards those that we will never lock eyes with because they are too small, too incomprehensible, too far away ... \'How should I care for that which I do not know, that which I have never met\' is a question that also inadvertently echoes that asked of us by this pandemic. More prescient for its time than the author could have imagined.
Greta Thunberg, Malena Ernman, Svante Thunberg
PositiveThe Irish Times (IRE)...an unflinching look at both [Greta\'s] family cosmos and the civilisation that it is embedded within ... Melana has written what is a polemical, a manifesto, smuggled in under the cloak of a celebrity memoir. It is cunning and clever. We are ushered along with tidbits of what we want, we are given full-frontal views through their living-room window. But there is always a level of irony to this. We look between the curtains clutching peanuts and they, mid act, meet us with a sardonic stare. It is a confrontation: we see you looking, while you carry on as normal, and retweet our daughters’ posts ... We are left reminded, the future is ours to choose. It’s time for us to take our place on the stage, then. It’s time for us to come out from behind the curtains, dust the peanut skin off our hands.