Nathaniel Rich

Cindy Seip

Nathaniel Rich is the author of three novels and a writer at large for The New York Times Magazine and a regular contributor to The Atlantic and The New York Review of Books. By 1979, we knew nearly everything we understand today about climate change―including how to stop it. Over the next decade, a handful of scientists, politicians, and strategists, led by two unlikely heroes, risked their careers in a desperate, escalating campaign to convince the world to act before it was too late. In Losing Earth (MCD) Rich tells their story, and ours. The book expands on a story Rich originally wrote for the New York Times Magazine, and to which it dedicated an entire issue. Rich’s groundbreaking chronicle of that decade became an instant journalistic phenomenon. In its emphasis on the lives of the people who grappled with the great existential threat of our age, it made vivid the moral dimensions of our shared plight. Losing Earth tells the human story of climate change in even richer, more intimate terms. It reveals, in previously unreported detail, the birth of climate denialism and the genesis of the fossil fuel industry’s coordinated effort to thwart climate policy through misinformation propaganda and political influence. The book carries the story into the present day, wrestling with the long shadow of our past failures and asking crucial questions about how we make sense of our past, our future, and ourselves. In a starred review, Booklist noted that Rich’s work is “[a] must-read handbook for everyone concerned about our planet’s future . . . Losing Earth is eloquent, devastating, and crucial.”