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on 28 January 2015
The world of palaeontology has gone through some rather major shake-ups in the last decade or so and our understanding of just what dinosaurs and their contemporaries looked like has been right at the epicentre. It's about time we started to similarly shake-up palaeo-art and hopefully this book will be the first of many to address just that!
If you have any interest in palaeontology, biology or anatomical art then I cannot recommend this book enough. The idea is an extremely simple one: take a look at how dinosaurs and other extinct creatures are most commonly portrayed and ask why? Yet, to my knowledge, no one else has actually addressed this fascinating topic, let alone produced a host of fantastic illustrations to go along with their counter-points. The quality of the illustrations does vary a little, but that's to be expected in a book with multiple contributors; plus, every piece has been cleverly designed to highlight a specific problem with your average palaeo-artist's work.
Frankly, if all this book contained was images of "classic" palaeo-art and the artist's re-imagined (yet equally plausible) take on the same scene it would be interesting enough, but the in depth discussion that accompanies each piece is often astonishing. Conway and Naish have a fantastic way of writing that captures their own excitement surrounding the subjects and also manages to be factual and educational. They're also not afraid to put their necks on the line, with some wonderfully weird ideas making the cut, nor admit to their/the field's failings and limitations when it comes to guesstimating appearance and behaviour from, ostensibly, rocks.
Then, of course, there is All Tomorrows. Though it occupies the end quarter of All Yesterdays, in many ways All Tomorrows is worthy of being a book just by itself. By juxtaposing the subject from the unknown creatures of the past to applying palaeo-art and speculative behaviour modelling to animals from the present, All Tomorrows serves both as a reminder that, ultimately, we're always bound to be a little bit wrong, as well as driving home the many problems with current palaeo-art techniques the book is initially set up to confront. Basically, I came for the images of protoceratops climbing trees, but I stayed for the nightmare that is vampiric baboons!

A fantastic book that will occupy a place of pride on my book shelf for many years to come.
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on 31 December 2014
This is a self published book and the format is a little odd, it is quite a slim volume, some of the pages though blank are still numbered and it needs a few tweaks, but being a Lulu publisher myself I find some of the formatting issues a bit awkward and so I recognised the issues the authors probably encountered. The book could be better if the format was different, more comic book shaped. Also buy this direct from Lulu.com and use the promo codes, you'll save some more!
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on 25 October 2013
A very odd book, almost a part of the growing genre of "speculative evolution", but based on real fossils and cleverly questioning our interpretations of those fossils. It's on one hand very specialised in deconstructing dinosaur art, but on the other hand, very accessible and enchanting because it reminds us that dinosaurs were not mere structures of bones, but living creatures with their own idiosyncratic behaviour. We might never know how they behaved, but we are reminded nonetheless that they were real living creatures, which could be as odd and as unpredictable as any creature alive today. It has to be seen in the context of other books on dinosaurs, but as such, I highly recommend it.
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on 25 January 2017
The book is a bit thinner than I expected for the price, but still very enjoyable. The section showing interpretations of modern animals based purely on skeletons is fascinating and helps demonstrate just how much guesswork goes into our perception of dinosaurs.
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on 10 December 2017
Very interesting book, beautifully illustrated. My only complaint is it's too short!
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on 24 July 2013
Take it on holiday, but also pack some other books, unless you're only going a way for the weekend.

It's factual, but best read as if a hobby book or vastly extended column. Short, interesting, lots of pictures.
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on 2 March 2016
Really interesting look into the ways that reconstructions of Dinosaurs are warped by the lack of soft tissue preservation, lack of imagination, and by incorrect initial assumptions. This is absolutely worth reading if you have any interest in this subject at all
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on 30 May 2013
This was a very lovely book and is, as it says, speculative in the extreme. Nice art work illustrates some great ideas and it is a charming book, if a little thin for the cost. You could read this in an evening.
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on 1 July 2016
Brilliant! I got into their stuff by stumbling upon "All Tomorrows" (which is about speculative future evolution and also excellent). I just wish there were more things like this.
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on 7 November 2015
Great
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