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Ben Goldfarb Environmental Journalist presents a book talk on Eager: The Surprising, Secret Life of Beavers and Why They Matter

March 7 @ 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm

The Jacob Edwards Library is pleased to present author Ben Goldfarb. We were delighted he accepted our invitation to present in Southbridge.while he is visiting the area. The event is free and open to the public. All welcome!

Ben Goldfarb is an independent environmental journalist and the author of Eager: The Surprising, Secret Life of Beavers and Why They Matter (Chelsea Green Publishing, 2018), which the Washington Post called “a masterpiece of a treatise on the natural world.” He holds a Masters of Environmental Management from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and a B.A. in English and Environmental Studies from Amherst College.

Copies of the book will be available at the event for purchase from Booklovers Gourmet. A booksigning will be conducted after the presentation.

In Eager, environmental journalist Ben Goldfarb reveals that our modern idea of what a healthy landscape looks like and how it functions is wrong, distorted by the fur trade that once trapped out millions of beavers from North America’s lakes and rivers. The consequences of losing beavers were profound: streams eroded, wetlands dried up, and species from salmon to swans lost vital habitat. Today, a growing coalition of “Beaver Believers”—including scientists, ranchers, and passionate citizens—recognizes that ecosystems with beavers are far healthier, for humans and non-humans alike, than those without them. From the Nevada deserts to the Scottish highlands, Believers are now hard at work restoring these industrious rodents to their former haunts. Eager is a powerful story about one of the world’s most influential species, how North America was colonized, how our landscapes have changed over the centuries, and how beavers can help us fight drought, flooding, wildfire, extinction, and the ravages of climate change. Ultimately, it’s about how we can learn to coexist with our fellow travelers on this planet.

Reviews and Praise
A finalist for the 2019 PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award.

“A marvelously humor-laced page-turner about the science of semi-aquatic rodents… Goldfarb has built a masterpiece of a treatise on the natural world, how that world stands now and how it could be in the future if we protect beaver populations.” — Washington Post, which also included Eager on its list of 50 notable non-fiction books in 2018.

“The book lodges itself among the ranks of the best sort of environmental journalism.” — Boston Globe

“Written with clarity, intelligence, and humor, this engaging book will appeal to basically everyone.”―Forbes

“Impressively researched, charmingly written, absolutely persuasive. . . .Goldfarb makes his argument with a quiet power and deceptively breezy writing that paints a vivid picture of how the various inhabitants of the natural world rely on one other. Take one vital piece out and the whole thing could collapse.”―The Seattle Times

“Eager takes us inside the amazing world of nature’s premier construction engineer…and shows us why the restoration of an animal almost driven to extinction is producing wide-ranging, positive effects on our landscapes, ecology, and even our economy.” — National Geographic

“Filled with hard facts and fascinating people (and animals), this is an authoritative, vigorous call for understanding and action.” — Kirkus, Starred Review

“This witty, engrossing book will be a classic from the day it is published. No one who loves the landscape of America will ever look at it quite the same way after understanding just how profoundly it has been shaped by the beaver. And even the most pessimistic among us will feel strong hope at the prospect that so much damage can be so easily repaired if we learn to live with this most remarkable of creatures.”—Bill McKibben, author of The End of Nature

Sponsored by Friends of Jacob Edwards Library.


March 7
6:30 pm - 7:30 pm
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Jacob Edwards Library
508 764-5426


Jacob Edwards Library
236 Main Street
Southbridge, MA United States
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