This book is an excellent collection of Peanuts comics, and the comics themselves are added to by the beginning Foreward and In...moreGosh, I love this book.
This book is an excellent collection of Peanuts comics, and the comics themselves are added to by the beginning Foreward and Introduction that relate a number of anecdotes about Charles Schulz' life and writing/drawing techniques. Where he got his inspiration, what he wondered about his own characters - it's fascinating, and I'd love to read a biography of the fellow I admire so much.(less)
It's odd reading this book years after I first did. I remember reading this book on my own, and I remember this book being read to me. I remember watc...moreIt's odd reading this book years after I first did. I remember reading this book on my own, and I remember this book being read to me. I remember watching the movie and crying, and dreaming of red hound dogs of my own. I remember lending it to a friend and my dismay when I realized she'd never read it. It's a book with many, many mixed feelings.
All in all, the book retains a special place in my heart due to such memories and nostalgia. It remains important to me because the overall message of it is important, however dated at times it may seem. It's important to earn things, to work for things - things mean more when we do them ourselves, and it's important to learn a certain amount of self-reliance. Yeah, it's old fashioned, but old fashioned sometimes can be important.
Do I think it's important to ask for help when you can't do it on your own? Yeah, of course. But sometimes tough lessons are important to learn.
This Peanuts collection was a gift to me.. probably from around the time it first came out. I can't even recall how many nigh...moreI got this book ages ago.
This Peanuts collection was a gift to me.. probably from around the time it first came out. I can't even recall how many nights I spent leafing through its pages, giggling at the same old jokes and admiring the artwork. Peanuts, baseball, and the cynical humor of Charles M. Schulz all combine to make this collection, well, a classic. Who doesn't enjoy a good joke now and then? This book is a summer's hot afternoon spent with lemonade by a pool.(less)
Rather than being a collection of strips pertaining to the Snoopy vs. the Red Baron gag this a full length story. Yes, it is a picture book, but it st...moreRather than being a collection of strips pertaining to the Snoopy vs. the Red Baron gag this a full length story. Yes, it is a picture book, but it still includes such wonderful words as "meander" and some minor French. Heck, it even goes on to describe the different fighter planes that are being flown and the tracer bullets being used. What's not fun about some minor WWI history?
The story is amusing, as Snoopy goes about his day imagining he's making his way through the fields of France. It's a charming little story, and one that I can't rightly imagine a little kid disliking. I loved the artwork, the vocabulary that didn't patronize the children, and the traditional Peanuts humor. It's a fine little book. :)(less)
What do you do when your dog is acting outrageously? If you happen to be Charlie Brown, you write a letter to the puppy farm you got your dog f...moreUh oh!
What do you do when your dog is acting outrageously? If you happen to be Charlie Brown, you write a letter to the puppy farm you got your dog from and send him back for a bit of obedience training. When Charlie Brown does just that, Snoopy decides a bit of school isn't in the cards for this World War I flying ace. An overnight stay at Peppermint Patty's on the way to Daisy Hill turns into something a bit longer... and longer... and longer . Patty, tired of Snoopy taking advantage of her good nature, decides to turn the tables on this feisty dog and a good lesson is learned.
Peanuts comics never get old for me, and these little booklets are some of the best. Snoopy's sassy behavior truly mirrors the fox terrier he was based on, and nothing can quash the fond memories of these animated specials in my mind.
The fondness I have of this book comes mainly from having read it (and having it read to me) as a child.
Stuart Little himself isn't a terribly likable...moreThe fondness I have of this book comes mainly from having read it (and having it read to me) as a child.
Stuart Little himself isn't a terribly likable character. He is capricious at best, and although he's helpful he's also terribly aloof and fickle in his cares. By the last third of the book he has run away from home to find Margalo whom he loves, but has no qualms about asking another girl out for a night of canoeing. He didn't even bother to write home to explain to his family what he was about. What a guy.
Yes, it also is troublesome that a woman gave birth to a mouse. I still don't quite understand that matter...
The ending of the book is bittersweet, beautiful, and altogether worth the read. It reminded me oddly of the ending of The House at Pooh Corner or the Piper at the Gates of Dawn in The Wind in the Willows. There's a sense of wonder and a sense of loss, and I feel considerably the images evoked by the endless trek North that Stuart Little has embarked on. Will he find he Margalo? Will he ever return to the New York he loved so well? It's debatable, at best, but with the imagery of the water and Stuart's seafaring ways it's safe to say he'd never settle in one place for too terribly long.
Beautiful book, even if perhaps an undeserved classic. Not E.B. White's best, but there are far worse fates than growing up with this story.(less)
Steven M. Wise lays out the case for increased rights for animals from a scientific standpoint. Bit by bit he examines the cognitive abil...moreAmazing book.
Steven M. Wise lays out the case for increased rights for animals from a scientific standpoint. Bit by bit he examines the cognitive ability of various animals (honeybees, dogs, great apes, birds, and cetaceans) in a rather rigorous and thorough way. He doesn't shy away from controversy (though he failed to bring up some of the questionable claims involving Koko) where it arises (especially in the case of the care of dolphins) and meets a lot of the questions that would be raised head-on.
While Steven M. Wise makes an excellent case for animal rights, he also acknowledges the trouble it will take to put those rights in place. He acknowledges and even postulates why people find it hard to grant rights to animals, and compares it rather compellingly to the trouble America had in granting both slaves and women increased rights in their respective times of emancipation.
Fascinating read, highly recommended to anyone and everyone who has ever loved a pet.(less)
I never knew that sled dogs had so many existential concerns!
This graphic novel was delightful. Cleverly written, beautifully illustrated, and well......moreI never knew that sled dogs had so many existential concerns!
This graphic novel was delightful. Cleverly written, beautifully illustrated, and well... just damn fun. I enjoyed the pack dynamics and the groan worthy punch lines. Reading the book in the library I did end up laughing out loud.
Quite fun, quite entertaining, and a very quick read. Four stars.(less)
I won this book through the GoodReads first-reads program.
I'm rather a sucker for animal stories, which is unfortunate because the bulk of them end wi...moreI won this book through the GoodReads first-reads program.
I'm rather a sucker for animal stories, which is unfortunate because the bulk of them end with the animal passing away and commentary about the circle of life. Luckily Dancing Dogs Stories wasn't one of those books. While the first story, "Gracie's Last Walk", delves into that territory the rest of the book focuses much more about the relationship that exists between humans and animals.
The stories ran the gamut from humorous to touching, but all were rather focused on the way that humans and animals see the world - how it differs, and how it is similar - and how we influence one another's lives. "Instinct Test" was one of my favorites, as it touched me rather deeply and made me fully aware of just how long we've known man's best friend. "Luther and Minnie in Heaven" actually got me to laugh out loud at the end, as did "A Day in the Life of Pearl and Joan". "Barn Cat" was a rather amazing story, in my opinion. As was "Old Dogs."
All in all, I really adored this book and found Jon Katz's writing incredibly clear. While the character's voices were all distinctly different, the author's style remained noticeable and a true joy to read. I can't wait for the other dog lover's in my life to read this one.(less)
We3 is a bit reminiscent of The Plague Dogs. It's also a bit reminiscent of those horribly depressing signs you see now and again posted on telephone poles.
"Have you seen Flopsy?" The sign reads, written in crayon, with a stick figure of an animal attached. "He's friendly and nice and loves people." But then there's no phone number attached. Or there is, but the sign is so vague that any animal could be returned. This comic is like that, only a million times worse. I wanted to hug 1 so very badly.
Three animals, for some reason stolen from families, have been militarized and given these strange suits of armor. The problem is, beyond the fact the animals have been turned into war machines, they're only prototypes. They're going to be decomissioned. So now we have adorable household pets that are in mecha suits and going to be murdered. Did I mention that they talk? And that the dog just wants to be a "gud dog". Yeah, it's soul-crushing.
Aside from the themes of animal cruelty, the pointlessness of war, and political corruption... aside from the obligatory moment where "Run, rabbit, run" is thrown in... aside from all that... well, it's Grant Morrison. The artwork is stunning, the comic traumatic, and the ending enough to bring tears to one's eyes.
Don't read it in front of others, unless you're in an especially dusty environment so you have an excuse for sniffling.(less)
This is an excellent history of both the thylacine and environmental conservation in Tasmania. While this is a reference book, it was far from boring,...moreThis is an excellent history of both the thylacine and environmental conservation in Tasmania. While this is a reference book, it was far from boring, and even delved into the cryptozoological question of the creatures continued existence into present day. I would highly recommend this book to people interested in the animal, as well as people with a passing interest in natural history and environmentalism. It is an excellent wake up call for modern day.(less)
This book was originally given to me when I was living in Montana, roughly three hours away from Glacier Park. During the time I was living there I ha...moreThis book was originally given to me when I was living in Montana, roughly three hours away from Glacier Park. During the time I was living there I had heard of a few grizzly encounters, most occurring amongst my friends who were camping during the late summer and the like. No one I knew personally had been harmed by them - but a few had been treed. I was lucky enough to see one in person, about ten years from me, in Yellowstone Park before I returned to the east coast. Well, I feel a bit better for having read this book after I got back from the West.
The book was informative, to say the least. Olsen has a habit of overexplaining some details, but the information still is interesting to hear. I feel as if I learned a great deal more about the park than I expected to - and the wealth of information extended even into the flora, something I never expected the book to go into long explanations of.
It's been said before, and bears repeating, that the park service reacted horribly to the information of rogue grizzlies. What bothered me most about the book, however, was the rather pessimistic view that Olsen took in the epilogue. I think he would be rather shocked today to learn how well the grizzlies are doing.. (less)
I should probably begin by saying that this book isn't for everyone. While the language is easily accessible to laypeople, therefore making this one o...moreI should probably begin by saying that this book isn't for everyone. While the language is easily accessible to laypeople, therefore making this one of the few books focusing on cognitive ethology that gears away from more specialized language, that doesn't mean it's going to appeal to the general public. While this book did see high sales, a quick perusal of the different GoodReads reviews shows a great number of people who found themselves bored to tears. Personally, I found this book both enthralling and difficult too put down. Comparative psychology is also one of the topics I find most interesting.
This book is written with a keen wit and a loving attention to detail. Alexandra Horowitz intersperses anecdotal evidence culled from her sixteen years with her mutt Pump along with case studies from both prominent scientists in the field of ethology and up-and-comers to explain the umwelt of a dog. Earlier chapters primarily deal with separating the truth from fiction behind canine evolution (i.e. just because dogs evolved from wolves doesn't mean they still view the world the way that wolves do) while later chapters delve into... well, more doggy-ness. Eventually the book makes strides towards explaining just what it is that dogs do know, while not doing dogs any disservice for, well, being dogs.
This book marks the first step towards a more scientific understanding of man's best friend, and hopefully will spearhead more thorough analysis in the years to come. I am as surprised as Alexandra Horowitz was that more studies haven't been done on dogs, though she does make a very fine point towards the end that there are some things that simply can't be studied objectively. Nonetheless, the bond between dogs and humans is very well explained in this book. I certainly will be looking at the dogs I see with a keener attention and doing what I can to interact with them on their own terms more often in the future.
It never ceases to amaze me that we can interact with animals as well as we can.(less)
Although I do not necessarily agree with all that Dennett stated in this book, I have to say that he stated it exceptionally well. This was an accessi...moreAlthough I do not necessarily agree with all that Dennett stated in this book, I have to say that he stated it exceptionally well. This was an accessible, high level philosophical book detailing the conception of animal minds vs. human minds. Each philosophical concept he put forward he carefully defined and explained with often amusing examples.
The ideas that he came up with himself (i.e. The Tower of Generate and Test, mamataxis, etc.) were novel and interesting without being too difficult to grasp. I enjoyed the quotes at the beginning of each chapter. Although the book was dense in its content, it never strayed too far from what is easily grasped with a bit of mental effort. I'd recommend this alongside Species of Mind which addresses several small flaws in some conclusions that he draws.(less)
This book concerns itself with in depth analysis of the benefits of an interdisciplinary approach to cognitive ethology as it relates to the question...moreThis book concerns itself with in depth analysis of the benefits of an interdisciplinary approach to cognitive ethology as it relates to the question of animal cognition. My only complaint with it is the decision of how the first two chapters were ordered. I felt that a better understanding of the first chapter was afforded by the definitions laid out in the second chapter. However, being a college student I was not necessarily the intended audience of the text who would most likely not be in need of the definitions in the second chapter and would merely find them redundant.
This book was extremely intensive, without alienating someone who was willing to put in some mental effort to understand what was being said. I would recommend this to anyone who was about to embark upon field research regarding animal cognition and/or someone who was seriously curious as to learning where this field could potentially be heading.(less)