Author: G. Tyler Miller Jr and Scott E. Spoolman
Publisher: Brooks Cole
Living in the Environment is an excellent book that I would highly recommend to students studying, or wanting to further their understanding of, aspects of environmental science.
The book acts as a good starting place for explaining fundamental environmental concepts and issues in a clear and concise manner. It branches across several subjects, including social and political aspects, offering a comprehensive insight into the topic.
It does an admirable job of drawing together a vast amount of information on a variety of topics, including renewable and non-renewable energy, climate change, pollution, sustainability, biodiversity and ecosystems, and it shows how these topics can be linked by key concepts.
Each chapter opens with a case study that is referred to throughout the chapter to help explain key concepts. Chapters are divided by key questions, which are used to identify important concepts.
Within the text, material is linked back to the key concepts highlighted at the beginning of the section. Material is also connected to the four scientific principles of sustainability identified at the beginning of the book. This is a nice addition and of immense use as it allows one to apply the concepts and consider the significance of sustainability to each topic.
As with most educational textbooks, there are the inevitable question sections and these are not terribly inviting. But they are aimed at encouraging the reader to consider not only the information in the text but also their own opinions and everyday life before providing a justified answer.
As with previous editions, diagrams and images play a key role, and those used highlight and clarify key points without being overwhelming or complex.
Living in the Environment provides a good starting point for developing an understanding of key principles and concepts of environmental science. It is written and delivered in a style that you don't need a degree to understand, but the concepts and explanations provide a high level of detail.
However, I did find myself looking for extra information - and for that, the book's online resources provide ample and easy-to-navigate sources for further reading.
It is a great go-to book, providing all the right information in one place. Who is it for? A range of students, not just graduate level.
Changes since last edition: Seven new chapters, a new co-author (Scott E. Spoolman) and the introduction of linked key concepts and scientific principles of sustainability.
Would you recommend it? Yes - it's a must-have book and a great starting place for study and research.