Top positive review
3 people found this helpful
on 3 May 2011
This is a great book for anybody that has an interest in Natural History. As a big fan of the Natural History museum I was interested in learning more about what goes on behind the scenes and this has proved to be the perfect book for my quest! Richard Fortey explored the back rooms of the museum when he was working there and admits that even over that time he realises that there is still so much that he hasn't yet seen. Obviously this is a world that will remain closed off for the rest of us but I found it so fascinating to think about all these different rooms filled with weird and wonderful relics, fossils and collections. Fortey shares his knowledge throughout the book, complemented by his quirky sense of humour. He gives detailed descriptions of the different rooms filled with drawers upon drawers containing collections of insects and birds to the bizarre sounding Spirit Rooms which previously held the jars of preserved animals and bits and pieces. Fortey describes eccentric characters that he met during his time there, including some very funny little stories about his co-workers and their activities!
There are some wonderful pictures of some of the exhibits and collections.
Overall a brilliant read, lots of great information. Taxonomy (the naming of names) is explained very well, and was something that I was curious about after reading Bill Bryson's A Short History of Nearly Everything. Have a read, you won't disappointed.