Book examines efforts to tame America’s waterways

Holding Back the River: The Struggle Against Nature on America’s Waterways, by Tyler J. Kelley. New York City: Avid Reader Press, 2021; 256 pages, $27.

“Cryin’ won’t help you, prayin’ won’t do you no good … when the levee breaks, mama you got to move”

That lyric from the classic Led Zeppelin song “When the Levee Breaks” sounds like either a statement of fact or very direct, solid advice. Trouble is, as journalist and author Tyler J. Kelley explains early in Holding Back the River, all too often in the United States’ history, presented with that situation we choose not

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