facts are optional

I’m reading this book, The World Without Us, which offers informed speculation on how the earth would change if all people vanished instantly.  Doesn’t say why or how we all vanished; we’re just gone.  And a lot of the book is interesting – he covers a lot of ground, and seems to know a wide variety of subjects in some depth.  Here’s where I have a problem.  You know how you sometimes read an article in the news that describes an event, person, or business that you know something about, and they invariably get some basic facts totally wrong?  That always makes me less confident in what the author says about the rest of the story.  Same here – at one point he’s describing the mountain range near Flagstaff and says the Rockies are to the east (OK) and the Sierra Madre are to the west (not OK).  He probably meant Sierra Nevada – I checked and couldn’t find any record of a Sierra Madre mountain range to the west of Flagstaff.  So now I wonder if the rest of the facts are also a little bit wrong.

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