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Tim Flannery is a writer, scientist and explorer. He has written many award-winning books including The Future Eaters and The Weather Makers. Among the Islands is the third book in a loose trilogy of Flannery's adventures, following on from the bestselling Throwim Way Leg (1998) and Country (2004).
'Among the Islands is not a polemic about environmental destruction nor a dissertation on the discovery of hitherto unknown species. It is above all an easily read and often surprisingly funny recounting of Flannery's early adventures. However, it also provides the reader with insights into how Flannery developed the logic behind the theories he espoused in The Future Eaters and particularly The Weather Makers.' - Gippsland Times
Close to 30 years ago, at the beginning of his career, Australian scientist Flannery (Throwim Way Leg) set sail to explore several remote islands in the southwest Pacific: Kiriwinia in the Trobriand Islands, Woodlark, and Alcester (all part of Papua New Guinea); Fiji; and New Caledonia. Flannery wanted to investigate how the mammal inhabitants on the islands had fared in the face of European colonization and the introduction of non-native species. Flannery regales us with tales of his traveling companions, such as Greg, the former Olympic wrestler and snake expert, who engaged in an evening of wizardry and derring-do before an audience of islanders. Among other discoveries, Flannery and his colleagues turn up two bat species distinct to New Ireland in the Bismarck Archipelago, enhancing the scientists' understanding of the zoogeography of the island. Flannery recalls his earliest expedition with wonder and excitement at having investigated the influence of island biogeography on the mammals that had evolved there, discovering several new mammal species-such as Ennis's flying fox, a bat whose males lactate to feed their young-and finding that some species documented by previous explorers had become extinct. Flannery is a crackerjack storyteller as well as a scientist. Map. Agent: Kim Witherspoon, Inkwell Management. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Australian scientist and conservationist Flannery (Here on Earth: A Natural History of the Planet) offers a behind-the-scenes account of his research on remote islands of the South Pacific. A masterful prose writer, Flannery weaves the tale of his search for rare marsupials with histories of the South Pacific and stories about quirky colleagues (including a taxidermist who re-created a complete baroque orchestra using stuffed cane toads), little-known animals (such as monkey-faced bats and giant crocodile skinks), and close calls (including snakes, leprosy, and bat droppings). Though packed with tales of adventure, ranging from the light-hearted to the terrifying, this book also touches on important scientific questions about the evolution of island-bound species and the ecological policies necessary for the preservation of diverse animal life. VERDICT This colorful narrative will appeal to a variety of readers-scientist and laypeople alike-conveying Flannery's passion for conserving rare and beautiful wildlife throughout the world.-Talea Anderson, Ellensburg, WA (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.