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In Search of Mycotopia

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What to expect

“The author’s sharp ear for dialogue imbues his word portraits with vivid detail. . . . Mushrooms are having a moment. [A] natural sequel for the many readers who enjoyed Merlin Sheldrake’s Entangled Life.”—Library Journal

“Comprehensive and enthusiastic . . . This fascinating, informative look into a unique subculture and the fungi at its center is a real treat.” —Publishers Weekly

“Nothing is impossible if you bring mushrooms into your life, and reading this book is a great way to begin your journey.” —Tradd Cotter, author of Organic Mushroom Farming and Mycoremediation 

From ecology to fermentation, in pop culture and in medicine—mushrooms are everywhere. With an explorer’s eye, author Doug Bierend guides readers through the weird, wonderful world of fungi and the amazing modern mycological movement.

In Search of Mycotopia introduces us to an incredible, essential, and oft-overlooked kingdom of life—fungi—and all the potential it holds for our future, through the work and research being done by an unforgettable community of mushroom-mad citizen scientists and microbe devotees. This entertaining and mind-expanding book will captivate readers who are curious about the hidden worlds and networks that make up our planet.

Bierend uncovers a vanguard of mycologists; growers, independent researchers, ecologists, entrepreneurs, and amateur enthusiasts exploring and advocating for fungi’s capacity to improve and heal. From decontaminating landscapes and waterways to achieving food security, In Search of Mycotopia demonstrates how humans can work with fungi to better live with nature—and with one another.

 

Critics Review

  • Publishers Weekly

    “Comprehensive and enthusiastic . . . This fascinating, informative look into a unique subculture and the fungi at its center is a real treat.”

  • Library Journal

    “The author’s sharp ear for dialogue imbues his word portraits with vivid detail. . . . Mushrooms are having a moment. In Search of Mycotopia could be a natural sequel for the many readers who enjoyed Merlin Sheldrake’s Entangled Life.”

  • “There’s a fungus among us, and it’s all good. As Doug Bierend’s engaging journey through mycoculture reveals, it’s time to make like a mushroom, join the club, and grow a distributed, curious, and sustainably prosperous world together—from the bottom up.”—Douglas Rushkoff, host and author of Team Human

  • Booklist

    “As well as gaining new respect for fungi, readers will master new vocabulary on the order of frass, saprophytic, and microrrhizal. It sounds perhaps bizarre now, but humanity’s future may depend on slime molds.”

  • In Search of Mycotopia is for mycophiles everywhere, from old hands to young enthusiasts, profiling in lively prose the kooky, brilliant, and inspiring folks who are changing the way we understand fungi, nature, and ourselves.”—Eugenia Bone, author of Mycophilia and Microbia

  • “What if our world were connected by unseen strands, by dynamic webs of life that maintain nature as we know it, a largely hidden substrate capable of healing us, feeding us, teaching us, churning death into life, sustaining the soil, plants, and animals? Well, it is, actually. Amiable, brilliant, and endlessly curious, Doug Bierend is the perfect guide to both the marvelous realm of fungi and to the radical human subcultures that have sprung up to celebrate it—citizen mycologists, cultivators, and activists from the Ecuadorian Amazon to the Pacific Northwest. In Search of Mycotopia is a fascinating, humble, and hopeful book, a glimpse at a cosmos of which we are not the center; in which everything is interconnected, and life humbly, quietly persists.”—Ben Ehrenreich, author of Desert Notebooks: A Road Map for the End of Time

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