The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks (Rebecca Skloot)

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks has a lot in common with Killers of the Flower Moon.  Both are fascinating pieces of on-the-ground journalism about events that happened decades ago;  both Grann and Skloot worked extensively with living family members of the people involved, and helped solved mysteries the family members never had answers to.  … Continue reading The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks (Rebecca Skloot)

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In Search of the Ivory-Billed Woodpecker (Jerome Jackson)

Ivory billed woodpecker said:  “Dear me! They’re cutting down my family tree; Where can I live, I’d like to know, If men will spoil the forest so?”  - Elizabeth Gordon I have always loved birds.  I have many childhood memories of basically memorizing field guides, then sitting at the big window looking out on my … Continue reading In Search of the Ivory-Billed Woodpecker (Jerome Jackson)

The Way of the Panda: The Curious History of China’s Political Animal (Henry Nicholls)

I read The Way of the Panda for two reasons. One, it’s partially about science, and I want to buck the American trend of scientific ignorance and make sure I’m informed about science topics. That’s cheating a bit, though, because of the second reason: this book combines animals and history. Animals – especially carnivores (in … Continue reading The Way of the Panda: The Curious History of China’s Political Animal (Henry Nicholls)