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The Book of Barely Imagined Beings: A 21st-century Bestiary Paperback – 3 Oct 2013

4.5 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Granta; paperback / softback edition (3 Oct. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847082440
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847082442
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 3.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 41,001 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Review

In this utterly charming fusion of science and navel-gazing, one discovers creatures that seem to belong to the outer limits of human imagination--including, somewhat surprisingly, humans. There aren't words to describe how beautiful this volume is, or the feelings it evokes. Stunning. --Booksmith

This is much more than a basic bestiary. --Pick of the Paperbacks, The Sunday Times

This is not just a beautiful book - it is an important one. ***** --Independent on Sunday

This extraordinary and exotic book is a hugely important work. Superficially, it can be enjoyed as an expose of the many weird and wonderful creatures we share our planet with. But it is also a profound journey during which we have opportunities to speculate on the much bigger questions: the origins of life, the purpose of consciousness, the destiny of technology and the prospects for human existence beyond our biosphere. --Ecohustler

This is not just a beautiful book - it is an important one. ***** --Independent on Sunday

The real is often more wondrous than the imaginary. So it proves with Caspar Henderson's beautifully conjured world of barely imagined beings - ranging from the amazing jumping spider to Venus's Girdle, an ancient comb jelly - out now in paperback. --'Best Science Books', New Statesman

Henderson jumps smoothly from scientific information to history to fiction to anecdote and uses each creature as a window into the human mission to understand and interpret the world. There is something lovely about a book that takes on so many disciplines and tackles them with confidence. Henderson presents us with something that stays in the memory long after the book is put back on the shelf. --Guardian

A series of Montaignesque essays that celebrate the diversity of life while at the same time journeying through the cultural and technological landscape of humanity's achievements - and threats we make on the planet. --'Best Books of the Year', Scotsman

Henderson jumps smoothly from scientific information to history to fiction to anecdote and uses each creature as a window into the human mission to understand and interpret the world. There is something lovely about a book that takes on so many disciplines and tackles them with confidence. Henderson presents us with something that stays in the memory long after the book is put back on the shelf. --Guardian

'A glorious A-Z of natural oddities' --Independent

'Caspar Henderson's great bestiary, this book of barely imagined beings, which has recently come out - where growth, and astonishment, and wonder, and effervescence are wildly reconfigured as kinds of virtue' --Robert MacFarlane discusses The Book of Barely Imagined Beings on the Orion Magazine Podcast

'The most beautiful publication I have read in many years. Caspar is a writer of extreme charm, wit and intelligence. The scale of Caspar's ambition is as remarkable as the depth of his reading. Caspar perfectly judged the digression coefficient to keep us on track, though we remain always interested in what sweet madness may be around the corner. His writing is funny and wise' --Hugh Warick, Resurgence and Ecologist

'Caspar Henderson's great bestiary, this book of barely imagined beings, which has recently come out - where growth, and astonishment, and wonder, and effervescence are wildly reconfigured as kinds of virtue' --Robert MacFarlane discusses The Book of Barely Imagined Beings on the Orion Magazine Podcast

About the Author

CASPAR HENDERSON has been a journalist and editor with various publications and broadcasters, including BBC Radio 4, the Financial Times, the Independent, Nature, New Scientist and openDemocracy (where he was senior editor for three years). He is a past recipient of an IUCN-Reuters award for best environmental reporting in Western Europe. He co-authored Our Fragile Earth (2005, New Internationalist) and was the commissioning editor for Debating Globalization (2005, Polity).



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