Birdbooker Report 88

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"How does one distinguish a truly civilized nation from an aggregation of
barbarians? That is easy. A civilized country produces much good bird
--Edgar Kincaid

The Birdbooker Report is a special weekly report of a wide variety of science, nature and behavior books that currently are, or soon will be available for purchase. This report is written by one of my Seattle birding pals and book collector, Ian "Birdbooker" Paulsen, and is edited by me and published here for your information and enjoyment. Below the fold is this week's issue of The Birdbooker Report which lists ecology, environment, natural history and bird books that are (or will soon be) available for purchase.


  1. Aulagnier, S. et al. Mammals of Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. 2009. A & C Black. Hardbound: 272 pages. Price: £24.99 (about $40.00 U.S.). [Amazon and also available through NHBS]. SUMMARY: This guide covers over 400 terrestrial mammal species found in the Western Palearctic. It contains 104 color plates with the text and range maps on the opposite page. Anyone interested in the mammals of the region will want this book! GrrlScientist comment: Dare I mention that I'd really like to read and review this book too?
  2. Dunn, Jon L. and Jonathan Alderfer. National Geographic Illustrated Birds of North America, Folio Edition. 2009. National Geographic. Hardbound: 503 pages. Price: $50.00 U.S. [Amazon: $31.50]. SUMMARY: This is the folio edition of the National Geographic bird guides. The range maps have been updated. If you like bird art or the National Geographic field guides, you'll want this book!
  3. Palmer, Douglas. Evolution: The Story of Life. 2009. University of California Press. Hardbound: 374 pages. Price: $39.95 U.S. [Amazon: $28.76]. SUMMARY: This large book is divided into three main sections: The science of evolution, the story of evolution and additional material. The bulk of the book is made up of 100 illustrated fossil site reconstructions that show evolution in a panoramic format. This would be a great tool for teaching evolution! GrrlScientist comment: This book looks wonderful to this evolutionary biologist, science communicator and occasional college professor!

New and Recent Titles:

  1. Dean, Cornelia. Am I Making Myself Clear?: A Scientist's Guide to Talking to the Public. 2009. Harvard University Press. Hardbound: 274 pages. Price: $19.95 U.S. [Amazon: $13.57]. SUMMARY: Researchers often complain about the lack of science education in the general public. This book will help researchers to reach out to the public. Every scientist will find this book useful! GrrlScientist comment: As a scientist who currently communicates about science with the public, this book is a must-read for me!
  2. Inns, Howard. Britain's Reptiles and Amphibians: A Field Guide, Covering Britain, Ireland and Channel Islands. 2009. WILDGuides. Paperback: 164 pages. Price: GBP 17.95 (about $28.60 U.S.). [Amazon]. SUMMARY: This is a compact photographic guide to Britain's reptiles and amphibians. Each species account includes usually 3 or more photographs, a color range map, a circular chart showing annual activity and text. Anyone interested in British herptofauna will like this book.
  3. Naish, Darren. The Great Dinosaur Discoveries. 2009. University of California Press. Hardbound: 192 pages. Price: $29.95 U.S. [Amazon: $19.77]. SUMMARY: This book is divided into 5 main sections: Pioneering dinosaur discoveries, the great dinosaur rush, the dinosaur renaissance, feathers and fur: a new diversity and 21st-century dinosaurs. Each discovery is well illustrated. Anyone with an interest in dinosaurs will like this book! GrrlScientist comment: Written by my ScienceBlogs colleague, I certainly want to read and review this on my blog! Oh, Darren .. !
  4. Nisbet, Jack. The Collector: David Douglas and the Natural History of the Northwest. 2009. Sasquatch Books. Hardbound: 290 pages. Price: $23.95 U.S. [Amazon: $16.29]. SUMMARY: David Douglas (1799-1834) was a Scottish botanist who spent time exploring the Pacific Northwest during the 1820's and 1830's. This book details his exploration of the region. Anyone with an interest in Northwest history will like this book. GrrlScientist comment: Yet another book in this week's amazing listing that I would love to read and review!
  5. Ogilvy, Shelli. Alphabet Bird Collection. 2009. Sasquatch Books. Hardbound: 56 pages. Price: $16.95 U.S. [Amazon: $11.53]. SUMMARY: This children's book teaches the alphabet using birds primarily from western North America. For ages 3 and up. GrrlScientist comment: Not only would I love reviewing this book on my blog, but I know a little kid who would probably enjoy it, too (and would probably contribute to a "kid review and field test"!
  6. Reznick, David N. The Origin Then and Now: An Interpretive Guide to the Origin of Species. 2009. Princeton University Press. Hardbound: 432 pages. Price: $29.95 U.S. [Amazon: $21.56]. SUMMARY: This book basically updates Darwin's "The Orgin of Species." It make Darwin's book more accessible to the general public. This title will be useful for anyone trying to understand evolution. GrrlScientist comment: This is another must-read book for this evolutionary biologist!

You can read all the Birdbooker Reports in the archives on this site, and Ian now has his own website, The Birdbooker's Bookcase, where you can read his synopses about newly published science, nature and animal books. But Ian assures me that he still loves us here, so he'll still share his weekly Birdbooker Reports with us!


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