Elk River Books will celebrate the release of the anthology, Unearthing Paradise:  Montana Writers in Defense of Greater Yellowstone, with a free reading by many of its contributors on Thursday, Jan. 19, at 7 p.m. The event will take place upstairs at Elk River Books, 120 N. Main St., and will be followed by a book signing and reception.

We here at Park County Environmental Council couldn’t be more grateful for the tremendous effort that went into making Unearthing Paradise. PCEC’s own Max Hjortsberg began this project with Marc Beaudin and Seabring Davis before he started working for us and we got to see it all come together over the last year and a half. The talent and range of voices that its pages contain is tremendous.

We have been striving to defend our community and its wild places from the moment the two Yellowstone Gateway Mines were proposed and we have the utmost gratitude for everyone’s support in this fight. We all can hold this book up as a testament to why we are all working so hard to protect this place. We are honored and humbled that a portion of the proceeds from the sales of this book will be donated to PCEC to aid our ongoing efforts with our partners to stop industrial gold mining in Park County and the northern gateway to Yellowstone National Park.

Deemed by Pete Fromm, author of If Not for This, as “the most important book you’ll buy this year,” Unearthing Paradise is an effort to raise awareness and inspire activism to protect the wild lands of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem from gold mining and other destructive threats. The book includes poetry, essays and fiction by 32 Montana writers including Rick Bass, Tami Haaland, Doug Peacock and the late Jim Harrison. The book’s editors are Marc Beaudin, Seabring Davis and Max HjortsbergTerry Tempest Williams provides the foreword.

David James Duncan, author of My Story as Told by Water, calls the book “a treasure trove of courage and heart by the blessed rabble who inhabit and love the valley it was no stretch to name Paradise.”

Contributors who will read at the event include novelists Elise Atchison, William Hjortsberg and Russell Rowland; essayists John Clayton, Seabring Davis, Brant Oswald and Todd Wilkinson; and poets Marc Beaudin, Frank Carter, Dave Caserio, Michael Earl Craig, Tami Haaland, Greg Keeler, Max Hjortsberg and Ilona Popper.

The book is available online at Elk River Books and at select independent Montana bookstores. For more information, call 333-2330 or visit UnearthingParadise.org.