The Georgian Menagerie by Christopher Plumb is precisely what its title portends it to be. The book details the evolution of the menagerie during the long eighteenth century, and with it the changing ways in which British culture viewed animals and their relationships to them. The book is cleverly divided into a variety of sections to better sum up the changing cultural values:
Trade Ingredients Crowds (which delves into people's relationships with animals at large and contains sections such as "Bitten, Crushed and Maimed" and "Under the Knife" Humor
For such a slim volume the book is suprisingly informative and contains a great deal of primary sources within. While the way some animals are treated is incredibly distressing (Chunee the elephant in particular) what surprised me the most was how little our behavior towards some animals has changed. There are still idiots poking and harassing animals at the zoo, still people who view animals more as property than sentient beings, and still all too many people who believe that animal parts have a strong place in medicine that will revitalize them.
The Georgian Menagerie was an eye-opening book. Say what you will about the past, but at least during that time animals weren't destroyed for attacking those who abused them....more
The Path of No Resistance purports to hold the key to achieving a more successful, productive, and satisfying life. To Garrett Kramer the one thing The Path of No Resistance purports to hold the key to achieving a more successful, productive, and satisfying life. To Garrett Kramer the one thing that you must do in order to be successful is to stop thinking. If you can quiet your mind, you'll be more in tune with your emotions, and if you're more in tune with your emotions than your mind will automatically reset any negative feelings you have. That's the essence of the book.
While I think that he has a good point when it comes to clearing away negative thoughts, I don't think this advice is the best for people suffering from mood disorders or dealing with toxic relationships. For minor issues, however, the advice is good. You can generally communicate more clearly and from a better spot if you're calm, and the bulk of bad performance in sport seems to come from thinking too much.
The low rating then, is not entirely due to the message. The low rating mainly comes from the fact that I didn't enjoy the way the book was written. It was scattered with anecdotes that were either redundant or not terrifically helpful. The book felt repetitive more than much else, and several grammatical errors really grated on me: most strongly, the use of the phrase "I could care less." It isn't that difficult to correct to "couldn't."
I did enjoy the formatting, however. The use of summaries and bullet points halfway through the chapter and again at the end helped to drive home the points made. I just wish there had been more points, overall.
Finally, I thought the inclusion of a rather large selection of quotes in the Appendix was questionable at best and self-congratulatory at worst....more
Suspicious Minds by Rob Brotherton is an interest, slightly irreverent, study of what makes us believe what we all too often believe. From the harmless suspicious tendency to roll a pair of die gently in order to achieve a low number, to the paranoiac belief that the government is out to get you, to the all-encompassing conviction that interdimensional shape-shifting reptiles rule to the world - we all have some tendency towards superstition and belief in conspiracy theories. The why we believe what we believe can actually be more troubling and interesting than the what we believe. Unless it's dealing with interdimensional shape-shifting aliens. Those are probably the most creative.
See, the Queen's a reptilian. You can tell by the eyes.
Suspicious Minds may not have been as in-depth as I would have liked it to be, but it was still a very interesting book. The beginning is a brief history of conspiracy theories, meant to show that this style of thinking is endemic to the human condition rather than a more recent phenomenon bolstered by the internet and the now pervasive globalism. The history was fascinating, and at times mildly disturbing. I was especially thankful for the in-depth discussion of the Protocols of Zion after Dan Brown and Holy Blood, Holy Grail had popularized a new resurgence in belief that those are anything but a hoax. Hopefully this well-documented history of the forgery will put some of that to rest.
Following the history of conspiracy theories the book delves into what a conspiracy theory is exactly (and decides that an important facet of it is that it isn't and likely won't ever be proven) and then the hallmarks of conspiracy thinking. The bulk of the book is devoted to the hallmarks of conspiracy thinking and how every one of us is given to it to a certain extent.
The book is a good example of pop-science, without being erroneous. It's well-researched, intriguing, and would benefit greatly from a more in-depth bibliography in the back. I think that this is a good introduction to the subject overall - though perhaps the section regarding echo chambers was handled a bit more deftly by Jon Ronson in So, You've Been Publicly Shamed. It's still a valuable topic and an interesting book. I'm glad I read it....more
Animal Weapons: The Evolution of Battle by Douglas J. Emlen is a delightful enlightening read. Douglas J. Emlen focuses on many unusual animals, rather than focusing upon the typical big cats, wild dogs, and dinosaurs. The main thrust of his book is the insects - beetles, flies, and other such forgotten creatures litter the pages with their bizarre adaptations and startlingly complex behavior. The times when the author is writing about these are the best part of the book - he thrives in descriptions of the unusual, and the pages fly by.
The book never became boring, but the transitions were largely bizarre to me, which in turn affected some of my enjoyment. While I agree that there are rather clear parallels between human weapon development and animal evolution - and that the case presented was a good one - I think it was clumsily written. Transitions could have been handled better, but overall that wasn't so jarring as to heavily impact my rating of the book.
In spite of the small gripe in terms of transitions, the book was wonderful. The contents were fascinating, the arguments presented well thought out, and the illustrations provided by David J. Tuss truly stunning. The illustrations, two of which adorn the cover, are fantastic and playfully done without sacrificing detail or scientific accuracy.
Man-Eater: The Life and Legend of an American Cannibal follows the life of Alfred Packer as best it can manage. This man lived at the tail end of the 19th century, fought in the civil war, worked as a tracker, had horrible epilepsy, and ultimately may have murdered and eaten five of his travelling companions in the Colorado mountains.
May have. But the evidence is pretty damning.
So, let's name a grill after him.
The book is extremely accessible. It's easy to read, even with the subject matter at hand, and tells the story with ample reference back to the source material. While it has no pictures, somewhat disappointing considering the number of woodcuts referenced, the author does an admirable job of describing all that he wishes to convey.
The court cases themselves were interesting. I enjoyed the high number of quotations, the rich vocabulary, and the ample history given not simply of the figures themselves, but of the towns they grew up in. The murders that took place happened at a time when the West was still being settled, and Harold Schechter conveys the changing America spirit well. The frontier days are done by the end, and it's amazing how quickly such a change can take place in national character.
While I would be slightly hesitant to recommend this book to just anyone by virtue of its subject matter alone, I would feel slightly better doing so knowing that the main source of reference I had for this historical event was Cannibal: The Musical.
So, if you ever want to know the true story behind that - or are simply interested in cannibalism for some reason, this is a wonderful book containing not only story of Alfred Packer but quite a bit more tales of madness from those frontier days. ...more
I won this book through the GoodReads first reads program in exchange for an honest review.
I hadn't heard of Kevin Breel prior to reading this book.I won this book through the GoodReads first reads program in exchange for an honest review.
I hadn't heard of Kevin Breel prior to reading this book. The blurb informed me that he had a very famous TED talk, and has worked extensively with To Write Love on Her Arms - which makes sense given the subject of this book. Boy Meets Depression is a wry examination of his own life, told with a self-deprecating honesty that at times had me laughing out loud. The humor present in the book did little to soften the blow of the darkness to come, but was a welcome reprieve from the usual tone of these sorts of memoirs. Kevin Breel ultimately handled the subject of depression, and living with it, deftly and with a soft touch. This made for an interesting memoir, and an honest look at a difficult subject that I think would benefit a lot of YA readers.
The advice given at the end of each chapter often got a grin out of me, though it also did make me reflect on the changes I've made in my own life and how much little things really can help someone going through a tough time. Boy Meets Depression was a good read, and a valuable book for anyone who's lived with depression, or knows someone going through it. I think it would help others understand what people are going through, and how to best help a friend in a difficult place. ...more
I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
This book was phenomenal. M.R. O'Connor did an excellent job of eI received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
This book was phenomenal. M.R. O'Connor did an excellent job of examining not only the question of extinction and the controversial subject of de-extinction, but of asking the very uncomfortable question 'What is a species worth?' What is it that makes a person decide that one species is worth saving over another, and is saving a species from extinction truly a worthwhile endeavor? Does everything have an intrinsic value?
The book is divided into 8 chapters, each focusing upon a different species either going extinct, or possibly being revived. For those interested the subjects of the chapters are as follows: Spray Toads Florida Panthers White Sands Pupfish Northern Right Whales Hawaiian Crow Northern White Rhino Passenger Pigeon Neanderthal
Each species discussed raises a different question regarding the course of extinction and conservation. Should we save or protect a species if doing so hurts the human community around it? At what point of hybridization does a species stop being what it originally was? If human interference is largely responsible for the differences between a species that has been fragmented - are they still the original endangered species? What can we do to protect endangered species we know very little about? What if breeding a creature in captivity ends up erasing the very behaviors that were the hallmark of the species? Would reviving a species artificially result in the same species? Is conservation on the ground more worth it than rescuing the genetic data?
These questions and more abound, and are examined from all angles. The result is a book that looks at the ethical questions beyond conservation in a way that I've seldom seen discussed. This book is vitally important, engaging, and thought provoking. I would like nothing more than to see this book in the hands of everyone involved in the environmental movements. It asks uncomfortable questions and raises troubling points that need to be raised.
I can't emphasize enough how much I adored this text....more
I received this book through the GoodReads first reads program.
As many of you likely know, I've been on a bit of a James Bond kick this year and haveI received this book through the GoodReads first reads program.
As many of you likely know, I've been on a bit of a James Bond kick this year and have been studiously reading through the canon. My favorite of the books, and films, for some time has been From Russia With Love. How could I resist a peek into the real Cold War, then, and all of the complex espionage techniques utilized? Why even try to resist?
David E. Hoffman has painted a beautiful picture of the difficulties of espionage in Moscow during the Cold War. He meticulously documents different techniques used to elude the KGB, the gadgets that made spywork possible, and the manifold difficulties that come from such a tense environment that relies almost exclusively upon the human element. Equipment malfunctions, and unfortunately, people do too.
The book was extremely interesting, and the history quite dense. While I agree with several of the other reviewers in thinking that the book could have been structured a bit better in terms of Tolkachev's motives being revealed, it was still a very powerful story. I was continually struck by the variety of people the CIA employed, the level of technology they had at their disposal, and just how difficult it was to truly "go black" during that time.
The Billion Dollar Spy does a wonderful job of showing the human element of spying and what motivates a person to defect. It's remarkable how much damage a single driven individual can do....more
This book was purchased as a surprise for my boyfriend, combined with Absolute Transmetropolitan as late birthday gifts. Only late due to their releaThis book was purchased as a surprise for my boyfriend, combined with Absolute Transmetropolitan as late birthday gifts. Only late due to their release dates, I should add. It's a signed copy, which means it has a pretty ridiculous squiggle in it. So. There's that.
The actual book proved quite surprising. I didn't expect it to offer as in-depth as sociological analysis as it did. The book was littered with interesting information, extensive references to studies and papers that had been done, and generally fun anecdotes from the experiments that Aziz Ansari and Eric Klinenberg did themselves.
If anyone has looked into these topics before there won't be a terribly great deal of new information. Passionate vs Companionate love forms the basis of a lot of the books arguments, which at least to me is always quite interesting. The particular views of technology are interesting as well - as for once technology isn't viewed as either universally good or bad but rather as a tool that can be properly utilized to gain good results. Nice.
Some of the information in the book was in Ansari's most recent stand-up routine, but it hasn't gotten old for me yet. I enjoyed the humor, and think that it translated well to the page. It forced me to do a few double-takes as I was reading, when a humorous aside jumped into more serious text. It only became grating once or twice, and far more often got a real laugh from me. The full color pictures were beautifully printed and jumped off the page. It was nice to have a book that integrated them into the pages rather than having a few glossy pages in the middle. Well worth the money.
So, if you like Aziz Ansari's stand-up as well as sociological kind of pop-sci texts you'll like this. It's a weird niche, but I'm sure some people occupy it with me....more
So, you know the question isn't even answered in this book, right?
I picked this up on a whim at The Book Thing in Baltimore. The title made me laugh aSo, you know the question isn't even answered in this book, right?
I picked this up on a whim at The Book Thing in Baltimore. The title made me laugh and I thought it might make a decent gag gift of sorts for a feminist friend. Of course, I needed to read the book before I passed it off. Only decent thing to do, isn't it?
I kind of wish I hadn't.
Generally I enjoy sociological tirades, however inflamed they are. I've a decent background in anthropology and I'm no stranger to strife between the sexes being decently examined. It can be interesting to view the more radical beliefs, though too often poor examples are used. It can be interesting to see what other people think, and in turn be made to view things from an alternative perspective. Even though I (foolishly?) believe I'm more open-minded than most I found this book to be ridiculous.
The examples Maureen Dowd set forth to defend her rather shaky slightly non-existent hypothesis seemed to apply more specifically to her own situation than to women in general. She talked about being called a bitch, about men writing to respond to her column more generally than women did, and about her own experiences working in DC. Women in politics and offering political commentary, it seems, are the same as women everywhere else. I can't help but think that area is a bit more specialized and more volatile than others for some reason...
In addition to this her hypothesis was unclear. She seemed at points to believe that women would be better off if men no longer existed - an entirely chapter was devoted to how the Y chromosone will be extinct in 10,000 to 10,000,000 years and how women will then TRULY rule the world - but then also noted how men are feminizing themselves and how that should be viewed as a victory. She bemoaned flirting in the office, but then discussed how it's insulting when men didn't flirt. It was very confusing.
At the end of this book I don't feel I really understand what it was setting out to be. It was just disorganized vitriol pointed at no one in particular. ...more
There comes a time in every person's life when they discover a book they know they will love. They see the title and the cover and are instantly intriThere comes a time in every person's life when they discover a book they know they will love. They see the title and the cover and are instantly intrigued. With trembling hands they pull it from the case and read the back.
YOUR PET IS A SPACE ALIEN the text will scream from the back.
I had no idea, really. One in five pets in an alien from outer space? Which of my 8 hedgehogs falls into that classification? Inquiring minds need to know.
Yes, this book was every bit as ridiculous as I hoped for. I learned how to discover my pets Power Number, how to name it to correspond with its Power Number and keep it spiritually aligned. I learned how to discover my Totem Animal by visualizing myself as a Native American doing mundane tasks.
Truly an enlightening book.
It isn't as if science could explain almost every story within it....
I do appreciate the fact they acknowledge that animals are smarter than we think.
I'm a massive fan of Jon Ronson. He's one of the authors I seek out happily, trying to discover every last thing they've written for cWonderful book!
I'm a massive fan of Jon Ronson. He's one of the authors I seek out happily, trying to discover every last thing they've written for consumption. This book came as a delightful surprise. New Jon Ronson discussing something me and my boyfriend have recently been discussing on our own? Excellent!
So You've Been Publicly Shamed is an excellent foray into the dark world of the internet and how they take small things and immediately build them up into massive ordeals. What drives us to do this? How does it affect the person shamed? Should we really be doing this?
What set this book apart for me was the fact that the author interviewed not only those who were shamed but also those doing the shaming. He traced public humiliation as a for of prosecution back through the centuries and discovered how it affected those who were shamed. Is it effective? Is it not? How does a person get past this?
The answers were legitimately surprising in many cases, and naturally a great deal more complex than one would readily suspect. Personally, I found some of the conclusions of the book rather worrisome - in particular the ending and what it predicts for society.
This book drove home the need for civil discourse and for unpopular opinions. Living in an echo chamber is never a good thing....more
The book is written in a fairly engaging way. While occasionally it becomes a bit too superfluous in the topics it covers and general encouragement itThe book is written in a fairly engaging way. While occasionally it becomes a bit too superfluous in the topics it covers and general encouragement it is a much more entertaining book for it. It covers all of the topics vital to writing a proposal and formatting it, as well as providing sample proposals and resources for learning more at the back of the book. How to write a sample chapter is also covered, as is how to talk to publishers and get an agent.
It's a thorough book, and a better introduction than many how-to guides that I've seen on the internet have been. ...more
Yeah, okay, I love conspiracy theories and I quite like Decoded in general. They don't always get things right, but they do always amuse. I love the dYeah, okay, I love conspiracy theories and I quite like Decoded in general. They don't always get things right, but they do always amuse. I love the discussion it generates, wild speculation, hare-brained schemes and subversive history. It's good fun, and a good study in logic if you want to be cynical about. Would it make more sense of things to go this way, or that? What more could you want from entertainment?
This book was given as a Christmas present to my parents, and they both enjoyed it thoroughly. They gave it to me after, and yes, I gobbled it right up, too. The gimmick of the book is fun: each chapter is a different conspiracy theory with a small envelope at the front containing facsimiles of parts of the cases. For instance, D.B. Cooper's plane tickets, JFK's autopsy report, a poster for the Our American Cousin the night Lincoln was killed... It's fun stuff, and decent quality. Not as fun as, say, Griffin Sabine but what is, when it comes to the gimmick?
The book won't give you much more than the show did, with perhaps two exceptions. I felt the book went into more depth in regards to the Rosicrucians (who they are, what they do) and the Confederate Gold. Other than that, it was the same old thing. But that same old is fun, and the book was, too....more
When picking up Oliver Sacks it's important to realize that you're reading a medical text. The accountI kept getting strange looks while reading this.
When picking up Oliver Sacks it's important to realize that you're reading a medical text. The accounts you're looking at are medical cases, with only a marginal effort made to edit the language to something easier for the layman. Which is to say, these books can be rather dull. If you go in expecting that, however, they can be informative and interesting reads.
I learned a lot about the nature of hallucinations and the misconceptions that exist surrounding them. I learned that most people hallucinate, in one way or another, and that it's rather normal. I also learned how incredible complex our nervous systems are, and in particular our optical centers. Really, really interesting stuff. It's no wonder it breaks down now and again.
I also learned that it's incredibly unfair to introduce a Doctor fftych in a section dealing with textual hallucinations. How is that an actual name?...more
The advice in this book boils down mostly to "force yourself to be social" rather than offering advise for how to navigate the dark mires of forced coThe advice in this book boils down mostly to "force yourself to be social" rather than offering advise for how to navigate the dark mires of forced conversation. Telling a shy person to just stop being shy isn't all that constructive. ...more
I wanted to like this book so much more than I did. The Eastern Coyote is a fascinating creature, and one well worth deeper study. This book, while poI wanted to like this book so much more than I did. The Eastern Coyote is a fascinating creature, and one well worth deeper study. This book, while portending to be about just that, in truth was more about the symbolic nature of the creature than anything else.
The book spent far too much time focusing on Catherine Reid and why she wanted to see a coyote, than what the actual coyotes were like. While, yes, she was an interesting person and the symbolic value of an animal is a beautiful thing... I would have much preferred a more scientific or anthropological study of the animal in question. In short, I wanted this book to be to coyotes what Barry Lopez's Of Wolves and Men was to wolves.
This book did manage a fair bit, though. Though in a less interesting way than Daily Coyote did. Catherine Reid did a good job of talking about the designation of Eastern Coyote as a species, and how wolves and coyotes have interbred to a degree in the past. She explained how they managed to carve out a niche and maintain it even in the territory of bigger better predators. I wish it had been a bigger bit of the book....more
Recently I attacked the non-fiction section of my library, focusing primarily upon the sections devoted to biology, zoology, and cognitive ethology. TRecently I attacked the non-fiction section of my library, focusing primarily upon the sections devoted to biology, zoology, and cognitive ethology. This was one of the stranger books I picked up there. It looked amusing enough, though not terribly indepth. The title made me laugh, and well, the cover left a bit be be desired... Unfortunately, so did the book.
This book was comprised of a series of lists of odd animal behaviors and why they might act that way. It was written in a conversational manner, each little tidbit followed by an incredulous explanation that tried just too hard to be funny. Let the animals speak for themselves, or their behavior do it for them. No need to throw in puns, amazed silences, or a shrug of the shoulders. Quite frankly, the book came off as mildly insulting. A bit like the friend who just doesn't know when to stop making jokes to fill in what otherwise would have been a companionable silence...
The book would be great for younger children. Maybe middle school or so? It'd probably cause them to want to read more about animals and their behavior, and they might be in a better range to appreciate the humor. As for me, well... Nil nole sub sole. Most of the facts I already knew, and what I did learn didn't particularly surprise me....more
Right from the mouth of Doug Sandom, what more could you ask for?
I was lucky enough to talk to Doug before the book was released, and I'm forever gratRight from the mouth of Doug Sandom, what more could you ask for?
I was lucky enough to talk to Doug before the book was released, and I'm forever grateful for having had that opportunity. Doug is a brilliant storyteller, a very sweet man, and indeed the sort of person who not only you can imagine sitting in a pub with while he tells he stories... but a great many of people get just that opportunity. The fame that Doug has only served to define what a wonderful person he is. He's remained as humble as ever, though he's quite open about how he regrets leaving the band to this day.
The book holds within it many stories not heard before, and actually does a far better job of showing what The Who was like at that time than any previous Who biography. Doug captures the exhilaration that was felt as they became more famous, how they dealt with that rise in different ways, and the subtleties of the personalities that soon would go on to a massive stardom. He captures the camaraderie in a way that other biographies tend to glance over in favor of emphasizing the spats - which yes, there were - but the violence was never there from the start.
For fans of The Who? This is a indispensable book. It's right up there with Dougal Butler's recent revision of Full Moon, I'd argue, in terms of capturing The Who from those who were here with the band.
Get it, cherish it. If you've a chance to see the man himself, do so. He's a truly wonderful fellow....more
I've previously read A Prickly Affair by Hugh Warwick, as well as a handful of articles on the animals by him. While A Prickly Affair focused primarily upon the habits of the European Hedgehog and the need for conservation, Hedgehog focuses far more upon the cultural significance of the animal. The book is organized into sections detailing the hedgehog in literature, in film, in music, in mythology, etc. In short, hedgehogs have been insinuated themselves into our lives in more ways that one might expect!
This book is notable for showing a change in heart in Hugh Warwick as well. Previously the author viewed African Pygmy Hedgehogs in the pet trade in a derisive manner, and this book definitely softened that harsh edge. It wasn't an apology, per se, but rather a clarification of his perspective on the manner that was easy to understand. As African Pygmy Hedgehogs get more and more popular as pets (and more and more domesticated) the European Hedgehogs get pushed aside. The lessening of focus on the European Hedgehog has lead to a lessening in their conservation efforts, which is problematic in places where they're soon to be extinct in urban areas - such as England, Denmark, and Norway. Understand also that urban areas are where hedgehogs tend to thrive and you'll see why this is worrisome, and why The Disappearing Hedgehog is an apt name for one of their conservation efforts.
While the future is still rather shaky for the European Hedgehog, this book is a wonderful testimony to the charm that they have and the love that they elicit from people. They're a truly wonderful species, and this book highlights that beautifully. ...more
Hugh Warwick has managed to write a book that is simultaneously informative and deeply entertaining. His passion for the humble hedgWhat a great book!
Hugh Warwick has managed to write a book that is simultaneously informative and deeply entertaining. His passion for the humble hedgehog shines through in every page, and it's impossible to not have some of that rub off on you while reading this book. Indeed, it's impossible not to fall a bit in love with the animal the second you 'do the nose to nose thing' with them.
The hedgehog is an inherently silly animal, but there's something in its industrious and utterly benign nature that attracts both passion and obsession. There's something fascinating in the tiny creature, and what a joy it is to witness that love ignite in everyone I introduce the spiny beasts o. To see those emotions beautifully highlighted in someone else's words is heartwarming. To see it paired with a deeper scientific understanding of the animal was plain beautiful.
I've already passed this book on to two other people, and I honestly can't wait to encourage still others to read it. Save the hedgehog, save the world as the author put it. Any way an animal can be better loved and understood is a good one, and I've seen firsthand how passion for one creature can extend to all the others in our lives....more
Jerry Langton decides to delve into why rats have been around for so long, how they coexist with us, and why people decide to have tOH NO, NOT RATS!!!
Jerry Langton decides to delve into why rats have been around for so long, how they coexist with us, and why people decide to have them as pets. He does so with a distinct anti-rat perspective on the world, and a disturbing unwillingness to ever waver in his opinion or seek out people who think differently than himself. That, my friend, is why the book failed for me. The inherent prejudice against rats and rat-owners that permeated every page and the outright disgust that just saturated his language. That was why it got the dreaded one-star.
Langton has some interesting history of rats, he follows the basic run down of "this is why rats are interesting" that any writer would. Their ribs can collapse being the main fact that seems to shock him. He discounts their inherent intelligence when just about all scientific papers rate them as among one of the most intelligent animals out there, and he counts them as viscous and ready to attack when even the rat hunters he talks to admit that they only do so when disturbed. It's disturbing, just not in the way he meant it to be.
The true failing of this book, however, was the way that he wrote about rat owners. I've owned rats in my time. I found them to be very clean, very affectionate, curious and entertaining pets. I was only ever bit by a rat once, and that was when I startled him and truly deserved it. Langton puts rat owners into two groups: people owning a rat for the novelty and attention seeking deviant nature of it, and people owning rats as an apology to the species and taking it on as a burden. What the hell? What about people who just genuinely like the animal and what it offers...? Nevermind the fact he characterized the first group as being largely obese women with multiple piercings and or tattoos. Just... why?...more
I got this book through Netgalley for reviewing, and boy am I happy I did.
Fox Talk is a fantastic children's book that delves into the topic of domestI got this book through Netgalley for reviewing, and boy am I happy I did.
Fox Talk is a fantastic children's book that delves into the topic of domestication in a way that is easy for anyone to understand. They actually talk about the Russian Fox Experiment, how domestication affects not only behavior but actual genetics, and how you can assess these facts and animal intelligence for yourself.
The topic, while complex, is laid out very well and further resources are also offered throughout the book. The nature of exotic pet ownership is examined in a respectful way that acknowledges both the pros and cons and explains just why legality can come into question.
This is a book that I look forward to using someday for my own educational outreach, and is definitely one that I'll refer many people to while I work in the exotic animal field.
Five stars, no question. I'm so glad that this book came my way. :)...more
World of the Wolf by Candace Savage is an interesting exploration of the wolf's history and relationship with humans. It openly admits how little we uWorld of the Wolf by Candace Savage is an interesting exploration of the wolf's history and relationship with humans. It openly admits how little we understand the species, and goes on to explain just why we haven't put more time into examining it. The troubles of wolves and men are explored, and a great many wonderful photographs are scattered throughout it.
This is more of a coffee table book than it is one to pick up and read. The photographs in it are huge, detailed, and absolutely stunning. The writing is short, but well researched and well-done. The topics are never delved into too deeply, but what is said is meaningful and memorable.
This is a good book, and very enjoyable collection of pictures. For better information, the bibliography is extensive and includes Of Wolves and Man which is one of my favorite books on the topic....more
This was a very, very good retelling of the mysterious full family murder of the Robinson's.
Mardi Jo Link meticulously goes through all of the evidencThis was a very, very good retelling of the mysterious full family murder of the Robinson's.
Mardi Jo Link meticulously goes through all of the evidence in the case, considering each of the theories that came up regarding who might have done it. She relies greatly on primary evidence, turning to secondary only when it's not available. She keeps her notes clear, and keeps herself largely outside of the story. By the end of the book I had drawn my own conclusions, and was genuinely curious whether or not anything new would ever come forth.
My only complaint about the book is the very ending, when she goes back to describing Good Hart and it's current demeanor rather than ending it with the final evidence of the murder. It did serve to lighten the mood, yes, and to show how thoroughly Good Hart was affected by what happened. Still, it would have served better during the initial description of the town rather than being part of the epilogue itself....more