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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Clear but needs some updating, 6 Jan. 2012
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This review is from: Evolution (Paperback)
This textbook is exceptionally clear well written and easy to understand even for someone without a biology degree. It has the best introductory text on population genetics that I have found. It does focus on zoology rather than human evolutionary biology (as noted by other reviewers) which I preferred as biology as studied in many universities is getting far too anthropocentric. The plant science content is rather sparse despite the third edition claiming to have been augmented by additional botanical examples; the first edition must have had hardly any plant content at all then. Second there is no mention of reticulate evolution or critque of the biological species concept as applied to for example, plants and bacteria, which is a major omission. It is controversial but several statements suggest the author is a zoologist wedded to the orthodoxy of the BSC; although the third edition was 2004, so perhaps the fourth is underway and will include this. The evolutionary significance of hybridisation should at least be discussed as biologists are increasingly accepting this modification to the modern synthesis. I was also, as a plant taxonomist, appalled that, re infraspecific ranks, "biologists are skeptical about their utility" ; "over 99.9% of specimens can be fitted into recognised species" (anyone who has tried to do plant taxonomy would differ here) and "different species form relatively discrete genetic (and usually phenetic) units; subspecific units do not". Read zoologists for biologists here as this is not true in botany and It is really annoying when plants are swept aside like this - undergraduates deserve a more rounded account.
But overall this is an excellent book.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not the complete article, 28 April 2005
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This review is from: Evolution (Paperback)
This text is very good for covering the theory of evolution in terms of statistics, but is lacking in detail in many important areas- well i say important, but they are just based on my evolution module. There is insufficient information on the origins of life, evolution of tetrapods, and human evolution. If this book covered these three areas in more detail then i'd give it 5 stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book, 25 Nov. 2010
By 
Jose M. Montojo Wodeson (Spain) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Evolution (Paperback)
The book is easy to read, and it covers very well most of the areas of the field of evolution. I bought it because it is recommended in Richard Dawkin's "Evolution". It's very clear, and that's what I was looking for, as I've read many divulgative books, specially from Dawkins and S. J. Gould. I was searching for a clear but thorough book, and I think this one is perfect for someone like me, with some knowledge about this area but who wants to know what has been proven and what is "the opinion" of this or that particular author. Some areas are covered superficially, like basic genetics, the evidence for evolution, the history of life or human evolution. But the author also recommends other readings to cover in depth each chapter. I strongly recommend this book; it will probably clarify you many things, and make you want to know more. If you haven't read about evolution before, this book is probably big for you; and if you are already an expert ... well, perhaps you will learn a lot from it too.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great, 11 Nov. 2003
By 
Christian (Witney, Oxon United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Evolution (Paperback)
I bought this book as evolution and behaviour reference book for university. It is extremely comprehensive and covers all of it topics in a well structured way (that were far superior to some lecturers). It is fantastic as a reference book and is in fact my evolution bible - if I have a problem concerning evolution this is the first place I would look!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A lovely reading, 30 Jun. 2010
This review is from: Evolution (Paperback)
I've really enjoyed reading this book, even though I would have given it 4.5 stars and not 5.

The book covers all about the subject, from the very basic concepts to more advanced ones like population genetics and coevolution. It offers a good comparison between the evolutionist theories and the creationist ones, showing where they do fail.

Even though having some background of biology would help, the book itself explains the basic evolutionary and genetic concepts with many examples and tables.

The only thing I didn't like much, is the fifth, final part of the text, in which the topics aren't faced as deep as the previous four parts are. A pity.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars very 'user-friendly', 6 Mar. 2004
This review is from: Evolution (Paperback)
having only read half the book, i am very pleased. i have no background in biology / genetics but this book is, unlike many others, very accessible and fun to read. the style of writing is very comprehensible and it takes surprisingly little time to finish one chapter. the book is kept simple with helpful illustrations and some fotos. the chapter summaries could be slightly longer but they normally suffice for the qick reference. the side-margin notes help to locate essential text passages. the price is pretty much justified.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good general evolution textbook, 15 Nov. 2012
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This review is from: Evolution (Paperback)
This textbook has been extremely useful in terms of understanding the basics of evolutionary biology. Gives detailed and thorough explanations of a lot of the statistical methods and concepts behind the theory, and is a clear and well written text. It is, however, slightly outdated and does not provide in-depth coverage of the material. Very good for understanding the basics.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best evolutionary biology textbook available., 16 April 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Evolution (Hardcover)
A thorough and detailed introduction to the theory of biological evolution. Goes into greater detail than competing textbooks, but Ridley's written style is far superior, and it remains easily accessible throughout. Great examples and truly useful and up-to-date suggestions for further reading complete an impressive textbook.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good text (but not the best), 21 April 2004
This review is from: Evolution (Paperback)
This general text is less flashy and, in parts, more detailed than Freeman & Herron (my recommended text for my evolution course). However, it does not cover human evolution and human health issues particularly well
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars From the horses' mouths, 21 April 2004
A delightful and unusual book, comprising 65 landmark papers in Evolution,from 1779 to 2003, by way of Darwin, Fisher, Kimura, Crick and Medawar;touching on the fossil record, human evolution, molecular phylogeneticsand ethics
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Evolution (Oxford Readers)
Evolution (Oxford Readers) by Mark Ridley (Paperback - 23 Oct. 1997)
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