By Jim Williams
On a nature hike or a picnic or a weekend at the cabin it’s hard to have at hand all of the books you would need to answer questions about the more usual living things you might see. If I stack up my favorite bird, mammal, herp, flower, and tree guide books, well, it’s a stack you could use for a doorstop. Lone Pine Publishing has solved that problem with a handsome, well-conceived book entitled “Great Lakes Nature Guide.” In 238 illustrated pages, authors James S. McCormac and Krista Kagume cover the birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles, fish, invertebrates, trees, shrubs and vines, and forbs, ferns and grasses you are most likely to find in this part of the country. Each inclusion is covered in approximately 200 words of concise descriptive text that usually includes informative and entertaining factoids. The bird section, for instance, covers 105 species, a list that would meet more of your identification needs most of the time. This is a book that will go into the book box in our van. It’s going to be well used.