I found this book really helpful for work on literature and the natural world. Its approach is detailed, lucid and engaged, with the author examining a stunningly erudite array of critical material. Buell traces the genesis of ecological criticism from its roots in North American universities to its becoming a worldwide academic movement. Particularly compelling are his arguments about the relevance of literary criticism in our age of environmental degradation. As this is mainly a theoretical work, readers wanting to investigate the role of the environment in primary works of literature would do better to look elsewhere. However, as a work of criticism, this is a groundbreaking text that tracks the development of an exciting new field. It certainly won't disappoint anyone wishing to explore new literary thinking.