The Big Swim

Coming Ashore in a World Adrift

Carrie Saxifrage weaves compelling, thought-provoking and often humorous autobiographical stories into a climate-change memoir. From a four-hour swim through frigid open water to finding balance in a blueberry field, The Big Swim shows that personal growth arises from facing both inner tensions and threats to the biosphere.

By: Carrie Saxifrage

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How the climate crisis changed one woman’s life: “Stunningly beautiful . . . I found myself laughing out loud on one page and brushing away tears on the next.” —Ruth Ozeki, author of A Tale for the Time Being

Climate change is alarming and complicated. Governments are acting too slowly or not at all, and not enough people feel informed or empowered enough to demand action. But ignoring a catastrophe of such magnitude is a certain path to disaster.

The Big Swim puts forward the idea that personal growth arises from facing both inner tensions and threats to the biosphere. In a collection of stories that is frequently touching, surprisingly funny, and always thought-provoking, Carrie Saxifrage seeks out the places where science meets self-discovery, inviting us to join her as she:

  • Learns the art of appreciation from an ancient jawbone
  • Hikes solo through the wilderness to find balance in a field of blueberries
  • Swims for four hours through cold, open water, seeking a fleeting state of grace

Each of the stories in The Big Swim encourages possibilities for greater personal satisfaction with lower environmental impacts. While exploring significant topics, such as sustainable forestry, nature-centered philosophy, or First Nations’ culture, the author discovers that the greatest adventure is learning to align how she lives with what she loves. By turning her own despair into action, she paves the way for us all to discover the many tools we have at hand to meet the biggest challenge humanity has ever faced.

About The Author(s)

Carrie Saxifrage is a journalist and author whose work on First Nations responses to the proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline has garnered significant critical acclaim. Her research and analytic skills were honed over the course of a successful career as an environmental lawyer in the US. Now she writes for the Vancouver Observer and homesteads on a remote BC island. Carrie’s pursuit of adventure and love of nature has taken her up mountains like the Matterhorn and Chimborazo. In 2006 she committed herself to the most life-affirming adventure yet: a low carbon lifestyle.

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Book Specifications

ISBN: 9780865717985

Page Count: 192

Dimensions: 5.5 × 8.5 × 0.384 in

Publication Date: April 01, 2015

Audiobook Narrator: Carrie Saxifrage

Audiobook Length: 5:03:00

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