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Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars

on 24 June 2009
I first read this book a few years ago after I accidentally bought it from a book club (one of those where they send you an 'editor's choice' every month, and I'd forgotten to cancel it). When it arrived though the title sounded intriguing and the blurb on the cover sounded fascinating, so I started to read it. I was glad I did.

From a young age I've always been fascinated by 'why' and 'how' and understanding the reasoning for things, and I'll happily watch some wildlife expert ramble on about some animal I've never heard of before on TV, marvelling at stunning photography and film and the presenter's knowledge of the animal. Having studied psychology at undergraduate level, including social psychology and family groupings and types of relationships, I found Dr Tatiana's advice provided some useful background to the biological basis of some aspects of human social and sexual behaviour (and in fact I used examples from Dr Tatiana in essays during my degree), and a fascinating glimpse into what animals get up to behind closed doors so to speak.

I haven't studied science/biology for a long time now, but Dr Tatiana provides a comprehensive overview of the full range of sexual behaviours across the animal kingdom for those studying biology/evolutionary biology, psychology and related subjects, complete with an extensive bibliography and references at the end of the book (as well as additional explanation where needed in the text), while providing an informative and entertaining read for anyone who just has an interest in the subject. No previous knowledge is required, the long words are explained, and if Dr Tatiana proves anything, it's that there's no such thing as 'normal' sexual behaviour - there are some strange animals out there! But then again, they'd probably think our sexual behaviour's somewhat odd too...

I've just bought another copy of this for a friend, as think (hope) he'll appreciate the humour of the book, and being one of those people who knows a vast amount about nothing in particular, he'll hopefully end up with some more facts, backed by biology, to add to his repository of knowledge, even if it's only that as a species we're a bit of an oddity, and that if they could talk, the animals around would be asking us why on earth we have sex when we know there's no chance of conception, why human females don't display some sort of sign that they're at their most fertile, and why human males limit their chances of passing on their genes to the next generation by staying (largely) with only one partner and continuing to have sex even after she's no longer able to conceive. A fascinating read!
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on 24 November 2016
A fascinating book if you are interested in evolutionary biology. Each section is introduced by an animal writing a letter (written with wit and a sense of humour) to "agony aunt" Dr.Tatiana about a perceived sexual problem. The answers give clear and detailed explanations as to evolutionary reasons and advantages for the behaviour.
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on 19 March 2018
Witty, fascinating and educational book.
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on 12 January 2017
Very well written in an informative and amusing way!!!
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on 25 November 2015
A very amusing and informative read. It works well as a coffee table book and makes a good present to a biologist enthusiast.
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on 27 August 2014
Covers can be deceptive. Those expecting a titillating sex manual will be disappointed. Despite its "Agony Aunt" format this is a serious study of the evolutionary biology of sex, complete with an extensive bibliography of academic literature on the subject.
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on 24 February 2015
Fantastically funny and easy to read. It was recommended to me by my lecturer and I have enjoyed every section of it. Everything is well explained and written in the form of an agony aunt replying to animals of all shapes and sizes.
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on 10 January 2013
I am not a scientist nor a biologist but I found this book so entertaining and interesting. I couldn't put it down! Liked it so much, I gave another copy to my friend.
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on 3 March 2016
All Good
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on 10 March 2015
Very enjoyable. perfect bedtime reading
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