This satire of the politically correct Microsoft set who now populate Seattle is clever, witty, and wonderfully entertaining. In addition to her keen eye for the comical, Semple’s story-telling is partly about the strains that modern day life places on relationships, especially those between parents and children. Mostly, though, her book is just a really fun read.
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Published: Little, Brown and Company - August 14th, 2012
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Published: Back Bay Books - April 2nd, 2013
Sam Kean ‘s clever and engaging biography of DNA covers far more than biology; it explores how one elegant molecule structures our bodies and lives, and it captures the complex discoveries of scientists—and their equally complex personalities—in an entertaining narrative style. The Violinist’s Thumb (Little, Brown, $15.99) is full of amazing facts (did you know that there’s enough DNA in our bodies to stretch to the moon?) and illuminating analogies (the nimble, ever-shifting RNA is compared to ancient oral storytelling, while sturdy, consistent DNA is like writing). The book’s broad range makes it ideal for readers of history, biology, psychology, and politics; the many tales of A, T, C, and G reveal what our genes mean to us and how they have shaped us as a culture, a species, and as individuals.
Published: Back Bay Books - July 16th, 2013
What the Robin Knows: How Birds Reveal the Secrets of the Natural World (Mariner, $14.95) is a fascinating new instructional guide as perfect for the experienced birdwatcher as it is for the aspiring naturalist. Jon Young shares decades of experience and scores of anecdotes to explain how learning to observe carefully and to understand the language and behavior of both unusual and ordinary birds can help us see and appreciate the complexity of the natural world, even in an urban environment like Washington, D.C. Descriptions of flight patterns, distinct bird calls, and avian reactions to disruptions in territory are fundamental aspects of the book; throughout, Young provides online links so readers can listen to the songs, chatter, and warning calls he mentions.