I also read foraging guides and feel like I know a lot about wild plants - but almost nothing about mushrooms. I thought this book would be a good guide to identifying safe mushrooms - but I was wrong. It was SO much more.
This book is my hands down favorite book of the year. It's straight forward. The pictures rock! It's both fascinating and absolutely scary at the same time!
I give away 99% of the books I review (to blog readers, friends, strangers, charities) because I do not like clutter and I feel like sharing the love (even for books I really like,) but I HAVE to keep this book.
This book would be a great field guide to identifying most edible mushrooms. It also makes a great coffee table book. Imagine the conversations that would start when someone opens up this book - a look of awe and fear in their eyes.
You can't imagine it, because you haven't looked inside. But once you do, you'll see what I mean.
The only drawback? I just finished this book while there is snow on the ground and I want to go out looking right now. I will most likely never eat a wild mushroom (until I find a local guide that can assure it's safety) but I want to hunt out their locations and know everything about them. I know where many wild food and medicinal plants are located in our area that would prove useful in an emergency situation. I have no plans to use that information, but I am so happy to have it.
Bottom line - this is a great book. I am keeping it. If you have slightest interest in mushrooms, you will probably like it. If you don't have an interest in mushrooms, I recommend you read the July/August 2013 Discover Magazine article on the amazing world of mushrooms and you just might change your mind. Or look up the nutritional benefits of mushrooms and you'll probably appreciate them a lot more.
* I received a complimentary copy of the book for review purposes. I was not compensated for this post and all opinions expressed are my own.