Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Sixth Extinction: Journeys Among the Lost and Left Behind” as Want to Read:
The Sixth Extinction: Journeys Among the Lost and Left Behind
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Sixth Extinction: Journeys Among the Lost and Left Behind

3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  60 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
The Sixth Extinction is a haunting account of the age in which we live. Ecologists are calling it the Sixth Great Extinction, and the world isn't losing just its ecological legacy; also vanishing is a vast human legacy of languages and our ways of living, seeing, and knowing.
Terry Glavin confirms that we are in the midst of a nearly unprecedented, catastrophic vanishing of
ebook, 336 pages
Published June 10th 2014 by Thomas Dunne Books (first published April 3rd 2007)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Sixth Extinction, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Sixth Extinction

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Mar 20, 2015 Pammie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So many books with this title! I thought I was getting the new one by Elizabeth Kolbert, but this is what arrived on the hold shelf for me at the library. Now I must find her book and compare! This one has really grabbed me, so I will see how it plays out.

Glavin went all over the world witnessing habitat destruction (cut down the trees, everything else eventually goes). By "everything", he shows how it is not just local flora and fauna, but human culture and languages. We are not only losing sp
Sep 24, 2015 Linda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"In the great vortex of extinction, there are always those cycles within cycles. There are ecological forces, cultural forces, and demographic forces." (p 256) Terry Glavin presents the citizen scientist/ environmentalist with a unique perspective on the state of our planet. By interweaving case studies and expanding beyond the stats, the reader is able to understand the political (however well-meaning) consequences, especially as they relate to cultural and language losses even to earth's farth ...more
Oct 13, 2009 Mike rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The topic is interesting, but I found the author's arguments not entirely convincing. He may have got it exactly right, but I was not specifically convinced by his presentations. I don't disagree that mass extinctions have occurred in Earth's past. In fact I strongly believe that simplistic answers like comets do a disservice to true detection of how and why mass die-offs happened. Sure the Iridium layer is there, but hundreds of dinosaur species were "pushing up the daisies" long before we were ...more
Jan 03, 2009 Kevin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lot of these nature/ecology books seem like drawn-out magzine articles, but this one actaully had enough material to be full book. While this book talked about the mass extinction and rapid loss of biodiverstiy currently going on, it also hit the similiar loss of culture and diversity of food (there used to be thousands of different apple varieties, but now we're down to a few dozen). This was a good book and very readable, although the writing could have been a little more tighter and a stron ...more
Nov 02, 2011 Dylan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The title is relevant to the subject matter, but the thing that makes this book unique is that it answers the question: why care? We may encounter a lot of compelling data about threats to biodiversity, but it's really hard to relate it our own experience. That's best done through stories, and that's why it's very worthwhile to read a book written on the subject by a journalist rather than a scientist.
Jan 16, 2011 Nicole rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked how Glavin pointed out the similarities between ecological extinctions and linguistic and cultural extinctions. He chose some fascinating examples, many of which I hadn't seen much about before even though I've read books with similar themes, and wrote about them engagingly. The focus on stories rather than statistics makes it a bit tougher to use as a reference in other arguments but makes the reader more likely to care about the points Glavin is making.
Jennifer Chin
Jul 21, 2008 Jennifer Chin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Totally enlightening, and extremely well written. If you've ever wanted to know anything about what's happening to the plants and animals in our planet, and also the role that humans and geological history has played on species and habitat loss, you MUST read this book. Does an amazing job of discussing many places, situations through first-hand reporting.
This is a collection of semi-essays (I say semi because the DO ultimately link together to form a full story) exploring not only the precarious survival of several endangered animals, but also the survival of endangered cultures. It's not easy reading considering I haven't read a DAMNED thing in too long, but I am enjoying it.
Margaret Sankey
Another Fourth genre work in which the author goes to a lot of trouble to locate and document the effects of vanishing animals, languages and traditions, among them the civil-war generating languages of extremely rural India, whale hunting in northern Norway, the removal of predatory panthers in Vancouver and the risky biodiversity of apples.
Mar 21, 2014 Debra rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the content; however, I found the writing style to be distracting, rambling, and disjointed. Very disappointing for a book I was so excited to read...maybe my expectations were too high. Overall, I thought it was just okay.
What I like about this book is how it connects many types of extinctions. It treats extinctions of languages and cultures as importantly as extinctions of ecosystems and species. I think that's very cool and valuable.
Apr 21, 2008 Jennifer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A brief snapshot at the hypothesis that we are going through a sixth great extinction period, only to be exacerbated by global warming and increasing human population growth. If you want to know what overconsumption has done to the other critters we share this globe with, read this book!
Mary Warner
Sep 08, 2008 Mary Warner rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book. Well written. I took copious notes from it. Glavin explains how extinctions are inter-related. When one thing in an ecosystem goes, others tend to follow. Human culture is not immune.
Jan 27, 2008 Avi rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A 6.5. Scary and informative topic but it could have been written a little better.
Aug 23, 2013 John rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very good cover of a difficult topic. The prose in places is lyrical. The author has a strange gift for choosing the right place to see a hard problem from.
Feb 04, 2009 Bob rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Why is the current "anthropogenic" mass extinction different than the other five recorded in the geologic record? The answer is here, and the story of comparisons is fascinating.
Kelly Anderson
Aug 19, 2013 Kelly Anderson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mr. Glavin provides a fascinating and intriguing look at the current state of the planet Earth from several different angles. Wonderfully informative.
aldo zirsov
Mar 22, 2009 aldo zirsov rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science
beli diskon di periplus pondok indah
Some interesting facts and ideas, but I found the style a little dry.
Alicia rated it liked it
Dec 21, 2007
Chuck rated it really liked it
Jul 13, 2009
Megan rated it really liked it
Aug 24, 2015
Danielle rated it liked it
Feb 16, 2013
Liz rated it liked it
Mar 02, 2007
Jenna Osborne
Jenna Osborne rated it really liked it
Jan 06, 2013
Danielle M
Danielle M rated it it was amazing
Feb 29, 2016
Ashleigh rated it liked it
Jun 20, 2014
Ken rated it really liked it
Feb 26, 2014
Michael rated it liked it
Feb 13, 2008
Laurie rated it it was amazing
Aug 18, 2008
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Share This Book