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Pacific Northwest Reading List

These resources are suggested to enhance your understanding and enjoyment of the history, unique culture, wilderness, and wildlife of the coastal Pacific Northwest.


National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America, Sixth Edition - Jon L. Dunn and Jonathan Alderfer
Packed with valuable information; maps of migration patterns, breakdowns of species and subspecies, habitat details, identification tips, photos, and more.

The Plants of the Pacific Northwest Coast: Washington, Oregon, British Columbia, & Alaska - Jim Pojar
Photographs, drawings, descriptions of plants and habitat, covering nearly 800 trees, shrubs, wildflowers, lichens, mosses, grasses, and ferns of the Pacific Northwest.

Natural & Cultural History

The Good Rain: Across Time and Terrain in the Pacific Northwest - Timothy Egan
Interweaving cultural and natural history, anthropology, and environmental conditions of the time, this fascinating portrait of the region stretches from English Victoria to Native villages in Washington State.

Killer Whales: The Natural History & Genealogy of Orcinus Orca in British Columbia & Washington State - John K. B. Ford, Graeme M. Ellis, Kenneth C., III Balcomb
Presenting 20 years of research on the orca, this is a comprehensive resource for understanding their unique, intricate communities and behavior with over 300 identifying photos of “residents.”

Land Use, Environment, and Social Change - The Shaping of Island County, Washington - Richard White
From the times of the first Native cultures through the present, White’s book follows human impact on the environment and social groups on Camano and Whidbey islands.

Reaching Home: Pacific Salmon, Pacific People - N. Forbes, Jay & B. Matsen
This thought-provoking book explores the importance of salmon not only as a food and income source, but as a vital component of many cultures from Alaska and the Pacific Northwest to Japan and Russia.

Pacific Northwest: Land of Light & Water - Art Wolfe, Brenda Peterson
This gorgeous book includes 175 of Wolfe’s most iconic photographs of the Pacific Northwest accompanied by essays by nature writer, Peterson.

Native Cultures

Indian Legends of the Pacific Northwest - Ella Clark
This incredible anthology of myths and legends provides insight into the region's Native cultures. History and descriptions of customs unique to each tribe are included.

A Guide to the Indian Tribes of the Pacific Northwest (Civilization of the American Indian) - Robert Ruby, John Brown, Cary Collins
An exceptional guide to over 150 Native Pacific Northwest tribes including history, demographics, customs, and present-day status, photos, and definitions of tribal words.


Sons of the Profits: There's No Business Like Grow Business. The Seattle Story, 1851-1901 - William C. Speidel
A riotous, comedic history of Seattle’s tumultuous, booming, and at times scandalous, early years of growth and establishment.

Women in Pacific Northwest History - Karen J. Blair
Through thirteen essays, Blair tells the incredible stories of the women whose influential roles and efforts helped shape the Pacific Northwest region.


Snow Falling on Cedars - David Guterson
A suspenseful and gripping tale set on a remote, beautiful island in north Puget Sound, Guterson’s acclaimed novel centers on a small white and Japanese community coming to grips with a local man’s murder in the wake of Japanese internment during WWII.