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ORANGES.

McPhee, John.

ISBN 10: 0374226881 / ISBN 13: 9780374226886
Published by FARRAR, STRAUS & GIROUX. NY 1967, 1967
Condition: Fine Hardcover
From WAVERLEY BOOKS ABAA (Santa Monica, CA, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Close to fine in a fine dj. (Trace of offsetting on half-title page. One tiny nick in dj.) Author's THIRD book. Bookseller Inventory # 11042

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Bibliographic Details

Title: ORANGES.

Publisher: FARRAR, STRAUS & GIROUX. NY 1967

Publication Date: 1967

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Edition: First Edition.

About this title

Synopsis:

A classic of reportage, Oranges was first conceived as a short magazine article about oranges and orange juice, but the author kept encountering so much irresistible information that he eventually found that he had in fact written a book. It contains sketches of orange growers, orange botanists, orange pickers, orange packers, early settlers on Florida's Indian River, the first orange barons, modern concentrate makers, and a fascinating profile of Ben Hill Griffin of Frostproof, Florida who may be the last of the individual orange barons. McPhee's astonishing book has an almost narrative progression, is immensely readable, and is frequently amusing. Louis XIV hung tapestries of oranges in the halls of Versailles, because oranges and orange trees were the symbols of his nature and his reign. This book, in a sense, is a tapestry of oranges, too―with elements in it that range from the great orangeries of European monarchs to a custom of people in the modern Caribbean who split oranges and clean floors with them, one half in each hand.

Review:

While many readers are familiar with John McPhee's masterful pieces on a large scale (the geological history of North America, or the nature of Alaska), McPhee is equally remarkable when he considers the seemingly inconsequential. Oranges was conceived as a short magazine piece, but thanks to his unparalleled investigative skills, became a slim, fact-filled book. As McPhee chronicles orange farmers struggling with frost and horticulturists' new breeds of citrus, oranges come to seem a microcosm of man's relationship with nature.

Like Flemish miniaturists who reveal the essence of humankind within the confines of a tiny frame, McPhee once again demonstrates that the smallest topic is replete with history, significance, and consequence.

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