rmn's Reviews > A Primate's Memoir: A Neuroscientist's Unconventional Life Among the Baboons

A Primate's Memoir by Robert M. Sapolsky
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U 50x66
's review
Nov 06, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: non-fiction-science
Read in October, 2009

A surprisingly engaging and well written book detailing the real adventures of Robert Sapolsky, the author, in the late 1970s and early 1980s while in Kenya studying baboons. About 1/3 of the book is about the baboons the author studied, about 1/3 is about his experiences with the local tribes and traveling through Africa, and the remaining 1/3 is a combination of the two.

While Sapolsky is a primatologist, this book has very little science (which may appeal to most readers) and is both witty and full of adventure. Each chapter contains a different story and the stories range from slapstick to thought provoking, though even the sadder stories are told with humor and life.

While the author could have saved time and money by just waiting 30 years and going to Crawford, Texas to study baboons, it is unlikely the stories would have been as rich or as compelling. A good light-ish read for just about everyone.
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