- Paperback: 704 pages
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster; 1st Touchstone Ed edition (28 April 1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0684827123
- ISBN-13: 978-0684827124
- Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 3.3 x 23.5 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 241,580 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Song of the Dodo Paperback – 28 Apr 1997
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"Not only is this book compulsively readable - a masterpiece - it is maybe the masterpiece of science journalism" (Bill Mckibben Audobon Magazine)
"A moving book... Quammen is a good writer who has taken the time to master an important subject and do it justice" (Richard Dawkins The Times)
"Not since Gerald Durrell's books 30 years ago have I encountered such writing about the natural world. The witty, pithy, modest prose and the clever interweaving of science and storytelling are of a quality unrivalled in th field" (Matt Ridley Sunday Telegraph)
"Impressive and deeply moving...blends first-rate science journalism with superb travel and nature writing" (Financial Times)
"David Quammen is a brilliant young star of nature writing... His book is an important example of the genre, written in an enchanting style. His knowledge, based on years of research and adventure around the world, is truly impressive" (Edward O. Wilson, author of 'The Diversity of Life') --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This is a stunning book with graceful reverberations' Terry Tempest Williams, author of Refuge --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
The author has a nice, laid-back writing style and has arranged some uncomfortable facts into an easy read. Here's an example. The voracious appetites of growing populations and industry put our natural environment under enormous pressure and cause habitats to be destroyed or divided into smaller and smaller pieces. So he asks us to imagine a fine Persian carpet - then to imagine it being chopped into pieces. What would happen? The edges would unravel and the bits that were left wouldn't be nearly so useful or so beautiful as the whole carpet had been. That's what happens to ecosystems when they're chopped into small pieces, like 'islands'. They unravel and decay. Island biogeography used to be just about proper islands - the sort that are surrounded by water - but it's now applicable to the islands scattered within continents.Read more ›
When most people look at animals they only see the animals--tigers, tortoises, hornbills, rhinos and so on. They never ask why an animal is the way it is or how it got that way; where it came from and what it is like. Few wonder why animals are where they are and why they're not where they're not. Quammen does, so he takes readers on an intriguing and fascinating tour of island biogeography that relates the history of famous early biologists from Charles Darwin, Alfred Russel Wallace and Joseph Hooker to biogeographers of today like Michael Soulé and Edward O. Wilson.
Quammen's bibliography is 23 pages of references in very tiny type. Fortunately, despite years spent researching Dodo, Quammen wasn't content to spend all his time reading dry academic papers and obscure texts. Instead he broke out his hiking boots and retraced the steps of some of these explorers. He describes his personal experiences colorfully with analogies, anecdotes and descriptions. If you've been to some of the places he describes, you feel like you ought to go back to see through opened eyes. If you haven't been there, you feel like you ought to go--with Quammen's book in your backpack. Here's his description of Komodo dragons being fed a goat carcass by rangers on Komodo Island in Indonesia.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Magical book. Puts the science back in big picture nature conservation, by fascinatingly readable and very relevant accounts from round the world, finally related to the erosion of... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
Well written and fascinating. It's self evident, if you think about it, that breaking up a habitat into small areas separated by roads, etc, means you can support fewer species of... Read morePublished 11 months ago by AReader
Iam still astonished at the amazing items that are constantly being brought to me and begging to be followed through. Read morePublished on 6 Sept. 2013 by peter Lindup
Essential reading for anyone interested in ecology or the future of life on earth. I'm an Ecology student, and reading this book helped me grasp a lot of concepts I found tricky in... Read morePublished on 17 May 2012 by Feargus Cooney
This book has a great deal of good information on biogeography and extinctions. Without it I would not know where to access information on this subject. Read morePublished on 6 July 2011 by fergus
Over a couple of cold ones at the local pub, the good doctor and i burst out simultaneously: "I found this incredible book! You've got to read it!" It was, of course, Quammen. Read morePublished on 3 Aug. 2005 by Stephen A. Haines
David Quammen has produced a book reminding us that biology, history and science are life's enjoyments. Not some abstract or sometimes notion. Read morePublished on 26 Nov. 2004 by C. Thackray