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Eugenia Bone to speak about microbia

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Eugenia Bone

Eugenia Bone will speak about and sign her new book "Microbia: A Journey Into the Unseen World Around You" on Wednesday, Aug. 22, from 6 to 8 p.m. at Grand Mesa Arts & Events Center.

A $10 donation is recommended. Call 856-9195 or visit www.grandmesaartscenter.com or www.deltalibraries.org for more information.

Bone is a resident of Crawford and a critically acclaimed journalist, with an emphasis on nature and food. She is the former president of the New York Mycological Society and a member of the National Association of Science Writers. Her previous books include "Mycophilia," "The Kitchen Ecosystem," "At Mesa's Edge," "Italian Family Dining" and "Well Preserved." Her books have been nominated for a variety of awards, including a Colorado Book Award and James Beard Award, and her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Saveur, Food & Wine, and Gourmet, among others.

While researching her 2011 book "Mycophilia," Eugenia Bone became fascinated with microbes -- those life forms that are too small to see without a microscope. She wanted to understand the microbes that lived inside other organisms, so she enrolled at Columbia University to study ecology, evolution and environmental biology. "Microbia" takes the layman on a survey of the role of microbes in nature and illustrates their importance to the existence of everything: atmosphere, soil, plants, and us.

Every day there seem to be new headlines about how our gut microbiome is making us skinny or fat, or about the bacteria lurking on our toothbrushes/iphones/toilet seats, or the effects of antibiotics used in industrial farming methods, or how probiotics are a cure-all. We know microbes are everywhere, but do we really understand just how significantly they shape our world and our day-to-day? Why are we attracted to the people we're attracted to? Why do some people have stronger cravings for chocolate? Why aren't graveyards a hotbed of disease? Why is grass-fed beef more nutritious than corn-fed? Why do we have better hair days after we skip a shampoo? Why is the paleo diet baloney? It all goes back to microbes.

Part memoir, part popular science, "Microbia" is an approachable, highly personal look at our relationship with microbes and shows how different the world is with a microbial point of view.

Bone clarifies the new science in this rapidly evolving field, explaining such things as the wrongheadedness of labeling some bacteria "good" and others "bad," the science behind biodynamic farming, "microbiomania" vs "germaphobia," and how microbes provide a new definition of family.

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