Bruce Berger

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Bruce Nicolas Berger (born August 21, 1938) is an American nonfiction writer, poet and pianist[1] who lives in both Aspen, Colorado and Baja, Mexico.[2] He is best known for a series of books exploring the intersections of nature and culture, usually in desert settings. Berger's book The Telling Distance: Conversations with the American Desert won the 1990 Western States Book Award for Creative Nonfiction.

Life and education[edit]

Berger was born in Evanston, Illinois and grew up in suburban Chicago village of Kenilworth.[3] He was the only child of Nancy Lander and Robert Oscar Berger, an accountant and Kenilworth's mayor. After public school he attended The Lawrenceville School. He graduated from Yale University in 1961 with a B.A. in English. Berger did graduate work at the University of California, Berkeley, but did not pursue a doctorate.

Career in music[edit]

Berger played piano professionally for three years in Spain, and more recently has played benefit classical recitals in Mexico. His years in Spain are the source of his memoir The End of the Sherry.[4]

Essays, articles, and poetry[edit]

Berger's articles and essays have been published in a number of literary quarterlies. For three years he was a contributing editor at American Airlines' magazine, American Way. His visual projects in collaboration with photographer Miguel Ãngel de la Cueva[5] have appeared both in print and online.

Berger's poems have been included in magazines and periodicals and in literary reviews in the United States and Scotland. He has published a poetry collection, Facing the Music. He is a three-time winner of the Colorado Authors' League Award for Poetry.[6]

Environmental interests[edit]

Berger is actively involved in environmental issues and wildlife preservation. He is or has been a participant in the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance,[7] The Sierra Club, and The Glen Canyon Institute. He is a board member of Niparajá, A. C. in Mexico.


  • 2014: IPPY Award (Silver Medal)[8] for The End of the Sherry
  • 2012: Solas Award[9] Grand Prize Bronze for "The Mysterious Fast Mumble" from Travelers' Tales, published in The Best Travel Writing of 2012
  • 2006: ForeWord Magazine Silver Award for Book of the Year[10] in the Nature category for Oasis of Stone: Visions of Baja California Sur, with photographs by Miguel Ãngel de la Cueva
  • 2013: Colorado Authors’ League Award[11] for Specialty Writing for Oasis of Stone: Visions of Baja California Sur
  • 1990: The Western States Book Award for Creative Nonfiction for The Telling Distance: Conversations with the American Desert


  • Hangin' On: Gordon Snidow Portrays the Cowboy Heritage; Northland Press, 1980
  • Notes of a Half-Aspenite; Ashley & Associates, 1987
  • A Dazzle of Hummingbirds; Blake Publishing, 1989
  • The Telling Distance: Conversations with the American Desert; Breitenbush Books, 1990; Anchor /Doubleday, 1991; The University of Arizona Press, 1997
  • There Was A River; The University of Arizona Press, 1994 [12]
  • Facing the Music (poetry); Confluence Press, 1995, revised and reissued by Conundrum Books, 2015)
  • Almost an Island; The University of Arizona Press, 1998 [13]
  • Sierra, Sea and Desert: El Vizcaíno; Agrupación Sierra Madre, 1998
  • Music in the Mountains; Johnson Books, 2001
  • The Complete Half-Aspenite; WHO Press, 2005 [14]
  • Oasis of Stone: Visions of Baja California Sur, in collaboration with photographer Miguel Ángel de la Cueva, Sunbelt Books, 2006 [15][16]
  • La Giganta y Guadalupe, with co-author Exequiel Ezcurra and photographer Miguel Ãngel de la Cueva, Niparajá, A. C., 2010
  • The End of the Sherry, Aquitas Books, 2014


  1. ^ Richard White; John M Findlay (15 March 2012). Power and Place in the North American West. University of Washington Press. pp. 195–. ISBN 978-0-295-80220-6. 
  2. ^ "Aspen author's new book provides a charming read". Vail Daily, November 8, 2014 Andrew Travers
  3. ^ ""Berger's journey into the great wide open". DNA India, by Joanna Lobo |24 Oct 2008
  4. ^ "The End of the Sherry". New York Journal of Books, review by Tad Crawford.
  5. ^ "Miguel_Angel_de_la_Cueva". Página de Miguel Angel de la Cueva. 
  6. ^ "Colorado Authors' League". Colorado Authors' League. 
  7. ^ "Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance". Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance. 
  8. ^ "Independent Publisher Book Awards". 
  9. ^ "Best Travel Writing". 
  10. ^ "Foreword Magazine". Book of the Year. 
  11. ^ "Colorado Authors' League". 
  12. ^ "There Was a River". Book review. Publishers Weekly
  13. ^ "Almost an Island: Travels in Baja California". Book review. Publishers Weekly.
  14. ^ "A Full Dose of the ‘Complete Half-Aspenite’". Aspen Times, December 8, 2005. Stewart Oksenhorn
  15. ^ "Small Press Bookwatch". Midwest Review of Books, Volume 6, Number 3 March 2007
  16. ^ " Oasis of Stone: Visions of Baja California Sur". Mexconnect, Reviewed by James Tipton April 1, 2008

External links[edit]