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Evolution: The Story of Life on Earth

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  419 ratings  ·  72 reviews
An accessible graphic introduction to evolution for the most science-phobic reader

Illustrated by the brilliant duo Kevin Cannon and Zander Cannon, this volume is written by the noted comic author and professor of biology Jay Hosler. Evolution features the same characters introduced in the highly regarded The Stuff of Life: A Graphic Guide to Genetics and DNA, now here to
Hardcover, 160 pages
Published January 4th 2011 by Hill and Wang (first published 2011)
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Average rating 3.95  · 
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 ·  419 ratings  ·  72 reviews

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Apr 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: subway, graphic-novel
THIS BOOK WAS AMAZING. The writer taught me so much and the illustrators visualized the science perfectly. I will be buying this book for my own personal use and as gifts for some curious minds on my Christmas list. This book starts with the first 4 billion years of earth and walks you through the present. In the process we are introduced to scientists and cells and everything in between. The book concludes with a "Suggested Reading" page and a glossary. Do you know the meaning of Cambrian ...more
Oct 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing
It's been a banner month for me and graphic novels. This one is no exception. Everyone should read it so that they learn what you should have learned in high school. If we weren't such a country full of frightened evolutionary deniers (aka, Fools and Liars), this would be required reading for every student.

It gives an easy to read and fun explanation of how life evolved on the planet, it explains genetics, it explains random mutation, species, parasite, zygotes, and all of them easy to follow,
Feb 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Simply fantastic. Instead of me writing a review myself, I just suggestion you read Ryan Haupt's great review over at iFanboy if you wish to know more.

Anthony Mancia
Mar 04, 2016 rated it it was ok
I think it was okay it didn't really impress me but it was good so the book was about these aliens talking about how the earth evolve in time I recommended this book to anyone who likes to know how the earth was made and the history
Feb 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
I never thought I would have laughed so hard at a book about evolution, but this story is told in such a humorous way and some of the illustrations are so silly that I found it hard to keep a straight face. The scene where the dodo bird tells the other dodo bird, "You are perfect, don't ever change" is one of my favorite jokes in the book. The information itself is also fascinating. I kept setting the book aside to look up images of the Great Moa Bird or to watch a clip of David Attenbourg with ...more
Nov 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Fun novel.

There are certain points I feel they could have "hit" like coevolution, directional selection, stabilizing selection. I feel like they maybe could have spent less time talking about evolutionary epochs and more about specific types of evolution. I did like that they included a bit on lactose tolerance. Why not branch on that and talk about possible ways we're evolving now?

The groveling bits got a little tiresome (squinches are pretty egotistical dictators apparently), but the kid
Dec 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science
I loved this book. This graphic novel packs a ton of great information into a short & sweet pacakge. The information is presented clearly, but also with humor which keeps it interesting as well as memorable. Plus, at under 150 pages and with a lot of the space filled with illustrations, readers of many ages will be able to learn from and enjoy this step by step look at the history of life on earth and how evolution works.

I regard myself as relatively familiar with this subject matter and I
Sep 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic
A fun introduction to the modern evolutionary synthesis that might be best for ten to twelve-year-olds. Some of the pictures might be too cute for teens, and some of the concepts may be too opaque for younger children, but all in all, there are sections in here that should appeal to all ages. There is a splash page with lots of dinosaurs doing lots of things that younger children should eat up, and the sections on speciation would easily earn a few extra points on a test for high school ...more
Abby Johnson
Jul 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Great for high school or college classes studying evolution, but also good for lay readers who just want to know more. The narrative structure of aliens on another planet visiting a museum to learn about the evolution of life on Earth allows for organic review and humor within the text. Highly recommended for anyone wanting an overview of evolution, adaptation, natural selection, mutation, and/or species variation.
Aug 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Overall a great book that I fully intend on reading with my students this year. However, some events were stated as fact when they're actually just one plausible explanation of observed events, such as the meteor off the coast of Baja California causing the extinction of the dinosaurs. While this is an important theory that I'd like to touch on with my students, I don't want them to think that it's the only idea out there as to why the dinosaurs went extinct.
Sep 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
I thought this was a great way to make a lot of the complex science that is involved in understanding evolution more accessible. It's definitely still a book about science and uses jargon, but the author defines terms as he introduces them and uses the character subplot to review material and tie different ideas together. Plus I'm a sucker for cheesy science center jokes.
Seth Saephan
Nov 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
I feel amazed about this book because it shows all the thing in the past and they talk about it and its funny. I would reccomend this book to a friend because it teaches a little how earth was created. This book is about that how earth was created.
Nov 20, 2015 rated it did not like it
This book is about germs spreading and how they are made.I did not like this book because I'm nit the type of person that likes to read about things that has to do with science and nature.I would recommend this book to kids that science not like me.
Daniel Watkins
Sep 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Really well done! Vocabulary is pretty advanced though, so bear that in mind when suggesting it to young children. My 4-year old enjoyed listening to it but I'm not convinced he understood much.
Ryan Haupt
Jan 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I posted my review over at iFanboy. Please click-through and enjoy!
Aug 06, 2019 rated it liked it
'Evolution: The story of Life on Earth' , is a 'novel graphic' (as described by its publisher) that takes place on the planet Glargalia. The narrator is a scientific advisor to King Floorsh, who is explaining to the King and his son Prince Floorsh about the way life began on Earth and perpetuated into the present, with a special chapter on humanity itself. Learned some good stuff I must say, and it was mildly funny, but it was slow in spots, particularly where the print became challenging to me.
Richard Archambault
Aug 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Really a 3.5. Not much that I didn't know about, I'm clearly not the target audience. I found it in the adult section but I think it would have been better for older kids or teens. Informative enough if you didn't know much about the topic, though. I did find the grovelling by the narrator-character to get a bit annoying.
Olivia Noonan
Sep 13, 2019 rated it did not like it
This book was very hard to understand in my point of view. I felt like i was just reading a bunch of random works. I would recommend this to people who have a wide range of word choice and know there types of animals. I thought I would have been able to understand it more, because it was a graphic novel but it was one of the most confusing books I have read in a long time.
Heather O'Neill
Feb 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is a graphic novel about evolution. I read this with my 11 year old to correspond with what he is learning for science. I thought that the book was very thorough. Evolution was explained very clearly and I even found that I learned some stuff that I didn't know. The book is in comic form, but it is very dense. I actually think that the book would be better for 8th grade or higher.
Sinclair Bowman
Feb 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is a great book for teaching what may be dull to a lot of kids as a narrative. The information is good, the story is cute and it doesn’t underestimate what kids can absorb. 10/10 is going into any library I ever put together for a child.
Apr 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: loeg-archives
A fun, enjoyable science comic for kids, with good lessons, effective repetition and lots of fun word play. Hopefully the target audience get their hands on this one.
Jeremy Stephens
Feb 22, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2018
Im going to keep this review simple- I found this book to be very lame.
Ryan Fohl
Jul 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a great lecture. I would recommend it for young but really smart readers. I enjoyed the sea alien frame, a smart idea to make it more interesting. Also has a very memorable description of speciation. And I felt for those trilobites. The blind mole rat made me laugh.

What I learned: Gamma males! How that e-coli generations experiment worked, and that it demonstrated how mutations may be huge advantages but are not inevitable.
Sam  Bronstein
Mar 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a great way to learn about the science of evolution in a fun and chilled way. The writing and illustration is incredible and brings to life how life came to be. This is a great read for anyone above age 10 and for those who weren't taught science in school it's a great way to catch up. Highly recommend.
Cami Wilson
Mar 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
The graphic novel Evolution: The Story of Life on Earth takes the typical tale of evolution and adds an intergalactic narrative that makes science fun and understandable. Bloort-183, an alien scientist, has been summoned by King Floorish to explain the theory of evolution. Bloort-183 takes the reader on a tour of scientific history, and along the way provides hilarious and witty commentary.

My Thoughts
This graphic novel is not your typical graphic novel—it is educational and fun
Emily Rogers
Audience: Ages 13 and up

Young Prince Floorsh 418 and his father King Floorsh 727 have eagerly anticipated the opening of the Gargalian Holographic Museum of Earth Evolution and the time has finally come for the scientist Bloort to lead them through a holographic tour! Bloort's tour is a comprehensive look at the ins and outs of evolution from natural selection and adaptation to convergent evolution and sexual selection. With visits from a holographic Darwin, Urey and Miller, George Culver, T.H.
Nov 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
When I found this book, I initially thought it was a creationist attempt to win kids over. I think it was the drawings and the campiness but I'm not sure. I paged through it and it seemed on the level so I took a chance on it - I always enjoy discovering an attempt to teach introduce science in a lucid and entertaining way.
This book succeeds. The premise is that a bunch of aliens are learning about the evolution of life on Earth so that they can save their own declining race. There are plenty
Personally thought this was really good. This book tells the history of genetic life on earth through the eyes of space alien observers trying to figure us humans out. It's a great device for delivering what could otherwise be really dry material and it's used to great effect. It's very information-rich, though. Almost to the point of being overwhelming.

The illustrations by Keith and Zander Cannon are wonderful---very cartoony at times, but when appropriate very exacting. There's something I
Dani Shuping
short note review:

I'm torn on this book...the artwork is great. It reminds of Jeff Smith's Bone and the character design of Owly. It's aliens telling the story of evolution on the planet earth to other aliens. Its got just the right amount of humor in the drawings to make the story fun.

The good and informative, lots of information (sometimes I needed to look stuff up) and I def. learned something.

Put together doesn't quite work. The illustrations and the aliens make me
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Dr. Jay Hosler is an Associate Professor of Biology at Juniata College and an award-winning cartoonist who writes and draws comic books about biology and natural history. His work has been called "ingenious" (The London Times), "goofily inventive" (The New York Times), and "entertaining and slyly educational" (The Comics Journal). His works include Active Synapse classics such as Clan Apis, The ...more