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Where the Wild Things Were Paperback – 18 Jul 2012
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Take this book to bed, or on a journey, but do read it. A series of short travel pieces, written over the past decade and spinning from Bhutan to Antarctica, Kamchatka to Exmoor, they can be read at a sitting or last thing at night, or at any time there is a spare moment. Each one is a Johnson gem, giving enough insight, humour and passion to lighten any day. Stanley Johnson is a rare bird who has led the life of his choice and made the world a better place in the process. His joie de vivre and enthusiasm shine through, and reading this book is the closest thing to spending time in Stanley's company. Relatively few books make me laugh out loud, but I defy anyone to get through this one without at least one involuntary guffaw. However, as in life, the humour is often close to tears. He begins with a telling vignette of a visit to an extremely remote Indian tribe in Brazil whose future is threatened by a new road being carved through pristine forest and heading for the Pacific. He ends with a hopeful wildlife story from Namibia about lions (he does love his big cats). In between, he meets an astonishing variety of people who, in diverse ways, are striving to save the world. I expected to suffer from 'disaster Fatigue' as I read story after story of Stanley's firsthand experiences of endangered wildlife, people and places, but I didn't. He manages to make each incident in this series of encounters he's had in all the best remaining wild places on Earth fascinating, frightening and funny at the same time. When I finally put down this unputdownable book, I found myself much better informed about all the disasters facing life on earth, and at the same time hopeful that, with people such as Stanley around, there's still some hope. --Country Life, July 18 2012
About the Author
Stanley Johnson is one of the unsung champions of the environment, having been travelling and campaigning for wildlife since he made his first expedition in his gap year, following the route of Marco Polo. He has worked for the European Commission as Head of their Prevention of Pollution division, was awarded the Greenpeace Prize for Outstanding Services to the Environment in 1984 and in the same year won the RSPCA Richard Martin Award for services to animal welfare. He is currently a trustee of the Gorilla Organization and an Ambassador for the United Nations Convention on Migratory Species.
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Top Customer Reviews
Besides adventure travel journalism, Stanley Johnson wears additional hats as Ambassador for the UN Environment Programme's Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) and as Chairman of the Gorilla Organization. As such he seeks to improve the lot for animals and ecosystems. It would be valuable to have a follow-up volume in a few years, to see how we're doing in these various places. Hopefully the original title might seem inappropriate and partly through Johnson's efforts it could then be called: Where the Wild Things Yet Thrive.
-- Erich Hoyt, Research Fellow, Whale and Dolphin Conservation; author of Orca The Whale Called Killer; The Earth Dwellers; Insect Lives, Weird Sea Creatures and other books
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Such an amazing and inspirational book by such an inspirational person. Definitely could read over and over again, 200% recommendPublished 19 months ago by Jazminebluey