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Ivory, Apes & Peacocks: Animals, adventure and discovery in the wild places of Africa Hardcover – 6 Sep 2012
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"Written by a consummate wordsmith, Alan Root’s enthralling memoir is the best true-life adventure story to come out of Africa for years. The final chapter, which describes Root’s last moments with Joan, I found almost too painful to read (5 star review)" (Brian Jackman Daily Telegraph)
"This is an entrancing book. Root is a natural story-teller, roaming East Africa before poachers began to decimate the wildlife. Against the staggering backdrop of East Africa’s landscape and wildlife, the darkness of its problems casts a growing shadow over this book... Luckily, Alan Root’s wonderful films remain, a testimony to the man of whom David Attenborough once said: ‘He made wild-life films grow up'" (Daily Mail)
"In a riveting memoir, Root offers far more than a few well-work anecdotes of cute, hand-reared animals who like to sit down to breakfast with you and curl up on the sofa after dinner...a truly compelling book, savage and sparkling by turns" (Kathryn Hughes Mail on Sunday)
"Root is aware that his magical life has ‘run parallel with a heartbreaking holocaust, as wildlife conservation has proved to be a disastrous failure’. This wonderful book can’t put it more honestly than that. Not only are the current generation of wildlife film-makers mere pygmies compared to Root, but soon they will not even be able to attempt matching his documentaries because the world he captured has ceased to exist." (Aidan Hartley Spectator)
"If Dame Daphne Sheldrick’s touching and romantic Love, Life, and Elephants has been climbing the bestseller lists in Britain and America, Alan Root’s Ivory, Apes and Peacocks is by far the deeper and more interesting read. The problems that beset Africa’s wildlife - population pressures, poaching, drought and disease - are all part of this story, though balanced here by Mr Root’s sense of fun and adventure" (The Economist)
Breathtaking close-up look at Africa's animals and natural wonders from one of our great wildlife pioneersSee all Product description
Top Customer Reviews
What a marvellous childhood and young adulthood lead to Alan's immersion in his life as a naturalist and cameraman the product of which we take for granted back in the UK. Thanks so much for this book Alan... marvellous.
I hope Emily the chimpanzee really did clean the house!!!
All that said, the story is riveting. He writes well. How marvellous that he followed his instinct rather than opting for a conventional career. And he comes across as a wildlife photographer who pioneered clever innovations in desperately difficult circumstances at around the same time that David Attenborough was making his mark as arguably the greatest wildlife film-maker of all-time. Good timing, that. Moreover, after reading about his experiences as a balloonist and a pilot of light aircraft over the African bush, and his hair-raising accounts of encounters with animals, all I can say is that I would have been paralysed with terror; one is moved to say that Alan Root is a very brave and courageous man.
His account of a bifurcated life that he shared with two women ultimately becomes achingly sad. But this is finally relieved by a poignant allegro describing a meeting with a third woman with whom he has two delightful boys, a visceral yearning for children finally satisfied in his later years.
Very good. And written from the heart.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
My daughter gave me this book as a Christmas present in 2015 and it has been in my bedside locker until now, waiting for the right moment to start reading it. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Eliza Conquest
Absolutely captivating, written with flair, eloquence and passion. I have always loved the writings of Gerald Durrell and when I read that Alan Root actually knew him (and found... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Marion Cote
The book focused mainly on the Congo, and the tropical regions of Africa. A welcome change to the scorching savannah that is usually so popular. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Alex Tee
I enjoyed this book from start to finish. A really good tale of the African bush and some about his personal life. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Sno-Bird
i found this facinating, and have bought it as a present - - -as I am visually impaired I read it originally in large print from the local library. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Mary Keefe mary
A very interesting read , brings back memories of years ago wildlife programs on TV . Have bought 2 more for Xmas pressies .Published 18 months ago by Twigg
It's a good book and worth reading. I've only given 3 stars, the front cover was starting to peal. Amazon, check no more is like this? I was in the printing industry.Published 23 months ago by Ptc Considine
A book worth reading. Captures the days if early safari. Many interesting stories. If you enjoy wild life and the wilderness you will enjoy this book.Published on 7 April 2015 by Lynne Northcote