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Book reviews for "Barnes,_Burton_Verne" sorted by average review score:

Michigan Trees: A Guide to the Trees of Michigan and the Great Lakes Region
Published in Hardcover by University of Michigan Press (September, 1981)
Author: Burton Verne, Barnes
Amazon base price: $34.50
Used price: $5.00
Collectible price: $7.00
Average review score:

A great book that just fell short of extraordinary
Definitely worth the price and the book does its job of helping you identify tree species of Michigan. Offers additional in-depth information about the anatomy of leaves, twig cross-sections, fruit, wood characteristics and uses. Most of which is more than average readers will probably want to know, but is interesting reading none-the-less. All I wanted was a reference to ID the trees on my property.

I was pleasantly surprised that the book also includes information on vines and shrubs, but was quickly disappointed when I discovered that this section offered no illustrations or pictures of either - only text descriptions.

Contrary to the front cover, the book has no photographs! Another bummer. All species are represented by illustrations only, but at least I can honestly say the drawings seem extremely accurate and have great detail.

My four-star rating is also due to the incomplete shrub and vine sections. I realize that this is a "tree" book and that adding such information is a plus, but the writer(s) should have stayed consistent and included illustrations for these as well. Trying to identify features by descriptions only is tedious and really seems to take away the joy of the whole adventure. Too bad, it would have been the "icing on the cake".

I recommend buying this book as a main reference and suggest finding supplement information via the web. There are endless sites that offer much of the same information for free, but carrying this book into the woods would certainly be more convenient than lugging a stack of print outs.

best tree field guide for the upper midwest
If you need to help your kid with the perennial leaf collection or if you just want a handy field guide for trees, I have found none better than Michigan Trees. I own a well worn copy of the 1978 edition and it is so popular among friends I am ordering another to loan out.

Forest Ecology
Published in Hardcover by Krieger Publishing Company (January, 1980)
Authors: Stephen Hopkins Spurr and Burton Verne Barnes
Amazon base price: $67.95
Used price: $7.44
Average review score:

Not a good book for students of forest ecology
This book is the required text for a class on trees and forests that I am currently taking at UC Davis. It is an imposing text and reads much like a journal of ecology. It is far from a good study aid for undergrads and grad students in forest ecology. However, given its copious literature citations, it could easily serve as a reference text for an advanced undergraduate course or graduate seminar.

The book comes full of graphs, charts and pictures, but much of it is superfluous. Key terms and concepts are not fully explained for initiates, a glossary of terms is non-existent for quick reference, and brief, detailed summaries of each chapter are not provided at the end of each chapter for time-pressed students. The book also contains numerous photographs of forest stands, maps, diagrams, and charts; however, because none of these are in color, they lose much of their visual impact, detail and valuable utility. Furthermore, there are no study questions at the end of each chapter for exam preparation. As such, initiates to forestry or landscape ecology looking for a good introduction to the field are pretty much out of luck.

Although the book has gone through four editions, it is still quite far from being a good textbook. In addition to the above mentioned comments, the writing style needs to be tighter. However, negatives aside, teachers and educators looking for examples of many of the concepts in forest ecology for use in class discussions will find this an invaluable text.

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