Book Review: I’m With the Bears

I’m With the Bears: Short Stories From a Damaged Planet

Edited by Mark Martin


In this imaginative collection, celebrated storytellers riff on climate change. Our grim future is one theme: Margaret Atwood’s prose poem envisions a “dry lakeshore,” while Paolo Bacigalupi describes a “Big Daddy Drought.” It’s not all dystopian. T.C. Boyle writes about a family’s botched environmental protest, and up-and-comer Nathaniel Rich evokes a biologist’s conversation with an ailing hermit crab. Each story packs an emotional punch that staid reports of melting ice caps can’t rival. “Science can only take us so far,” notes Bill McKibben in the introduction; it’s the artist’s job “to help us understand what things feel like.”