"Three Books ..." is a series in which we invite writers to recommend three great reads on a single theme.
Despite being a national environmental reporter, I didn't grow up sporting L.L. Bean or going spelunking with my friends. As a result, I often see reading environmental books as homework. But three new books on store shelves this summer eschew both purple prose and hyperbole to challenge the way we view our planet. These books remind us what's at stake when we chip away at the landscape — and what we can do to stop the damage.