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River Song, River Song, 0817310347, 0-8173-1034-7, 978-0-8173-1034-9, 9780817310349,

River Song
A Journey down the Chattahoochee and Apalachicola Rivers
by Joe Cook, Monica Cook
Edited by Historic Chattahoochee Commission

Trade Cloth
2000. 224 pp.
Price:  $49.95 s

This stunning photographic record of a source-to-sea river adventure
makes a compelling argument for the preservation of one of the
country's most beautiful, but threatened, waterways.

In the spring and summer of 1995, husband and wife photographers Joe
and Monica Cook explored the length of the Chattahoochee and Apalachicola rivers by foot and canoe in a rare source-to-sea journey. This 100-day, 540-mile adventure took them through every bend of the river system from its ridge-top spring in the North Georgia mountains, through Atlanta's suburban sprawl, down the Alabama-Georgia border, through the tupelo and cypress swamps of the Florida panhandle, and Þnally to the Gulf of Mexico.

In River Song, the Cooks make a passionate plea for the preservation of this important waterway. Their gorgeous color landscapes, sepia images of the "river people" they meet along the way, and strong personal narrative showcase the beauty and diversity of the Chattahoochee and capture the stories of those who live and work along the river's edge. All elements of the book combine to paint a vivid and fascinating portrait of the river's social and cultural history and the environmental troubles that threaten its survival.

During their journey, the Cooks found both spectacular beauty and disturbing degradation--often in the same bends of the river. Polluted, overdeveloped, dammed, and dredged, the Chattahoochee was named one of the country's 10 most endangered waterways in 1996. Currently some three million people living within the river's tri-state watershed are grappling over how to divvy up this finite resource. Everyone, the Cooks argue, must accept responsibility for the future health of this river system. As they see it, "Individuals hold the real remedy for what ails the Chattahoochee."

River Song is an engaging travelogue, a gorgeous photographic portfolio, and a wake-up call to those who care about this endangered waterway.

Joe and Monica Cook are freelance photographers whose work has been published in American Photographer, Backpacker, and Blue Ridge Country. They both grew up in metropolitan Atlanta near the Chattahoochee River, and they now live in nearby Rome, Georgia, with their daughter and three cats.


"With beautiful photographs, a fascinating tale of river adventure, and poignant images of the people of the Chattahoochee River Valley, the Cooks have produced a book that will undoubtedly activate every reader to care about the future of Georgia's greatest river."
—Sally Bethea Upper Chattahoochee Riverkeeper

2001 Southern Books Competion Award of Merit
2001 AAUP Book and Journal Show Trade Illustrated, sponsored by American Association of University Presses

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