#27 -- "Marking the Sparrow's Fall" by Wallace Stegner
As soon as I started reading this, I started loudly complaining that no one had ever tipped me off to Stegner's writing before, since it's right up my street. Which was a lie, of course -- "Angle of Repose" is pretty famous, and my friend Pete recommended Stegner to me a few years ago. I think I just concluded that it was probably boring.
But within the first lines of "Marking," I was saying "yes! That's it!" as he summed up in a few words something I've been struggling to say for years. This is a collection of Stegner's non-fiction writings about the western United States, and as (have I mentioned?) a child of that part of the world, it hit dead-on for me. Whenever I start rhapsodizing about the beauty of Colorado, rest assured Stegner's done it better (ok, usually about Utah).
It's more-or-less divided into three sections -- an appreciation of the West in general, environmentalism and conservation, and a sort-of combination of the two. It's done without overindulgence in sentiment and without preaching. Quite a good writer. I have two more of his books on the stack, and I'll probably get to them before too long.