Peter Anderson

A Grand Canyon Journey: Tracing Time in Stone (Children’s Press)

An excerpt:

Imagine yourself walking along the banks of a slow and muddy river. A dragonfly flits by, riding a warm breeze, and lands on the lacy leaf of a riverside fern. You leave the shade of a pine tree and walk through dried mud beds left behind by a previous flood. The sun is hot, much to the delight of some lizard-like reptiles who crawl across these cracked mudflats.

Fossilized plants, along with the beautifully preserved impression of an insect wing almost four inches long, suggest that the Hermit Shale was deposited in an environment like this. If we look at pieces of shale near the meeting place of the Hermit Shale and Coconino Sandstone, we may notice mud cracks. We might even find the imprint of a 280 million year old raindrop. For these features to have been preserved, it must have been dry, and getting dryer, when this mud hardened into stone. Eventually, this region became a desert, and the sand dunes that formed the Coconino above us covered the hardened mud of the Hermit Shale.

From a reader review (

“My son is in first grade and an avid reader. He selected this book from his school library and reading two chapters a night, we finished it in less than a week. Even thought it looks complex, the text and the illustrations in the book are wonderful. It's very well written and easy to read. My son knows most of the words in the book, and there is a glossary in the back for specific terminology. It's very engaging and stimulating even for an adult. I love reading it to him!”

Selected Works

Going Down Grand, the first full-length anthology of Grand Canyon poetry, gathers the voices of cowboys, explorers, river-runners, hikers, artists, geologists, rangers, and others whose words bear witness to this complex and magnificent place. For readers on the river, the trails, the rim, or beyond, the poems on these pages will make fine canyon company. Edited by Peter Anderson and Rick Kempa and nominated for a Colorado Book Award.
Heading Home begins with Peter Anderson's dharma-bum passion for the road, which leads him through the mountains and deserts of thr American West, and eventually lands him in an eccentric end-of-the-road town fill of mystics, misfits, and mountain dwellers. This book is a gathering of "field notes"--observations, recollections, and stories along the way, where home is understood as a work in progress and the way is a road that never ends.
In these contemplative essays written for seekers and adventurers of all kinds, Peter Anderson explores the scripture of place, the topography of memory, and the landscape of the imagination.
Independent, reflective, progressive, place-and-spirit-centered voices in and beyond the American Southwest. Telling it Real offers up some of the best work that has appeared in Pilgrimage Magazine since 2002.
From School Library Journal
Grade 4-6. Anderson takes readers on a guided tour from the rim of the Grand Canyon down to the valley floor. One can almost imagine traveling downward on the back of a mule as the colorful narration describes the geological history that created the distinct layers of rock. Clear, informative, and interesting prose and pictures make this a solid selection for libraries.

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