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The Soul of an Octopus
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About the Author

Sy Montgomery is a naturalist, documentary scriptwriter, and author of twenty acclaimed books of nonfiction for adults and children, including the National Book Award finalist The Soul of an Octopus and the memoir The Good Good Pig, a New York Times bestseller. The recipient of numerous honors, including lifetime achievement awards from the Humane Society and the New England Booksellers Association, she lives in New Hampshire with her husband, border collie, and flock of chickens.

Reviews

"The Soul of an Octopus is one of those works that makes you hope we can save the planet if for no other reason than to preserve the wondrous beasts we are fortunate enough to share it with."--Steve Lysaker, Outward Hounds
"In The Soul of an Octopus, Sy Montgomery immerses readers into an intriguing, seductive world just beneath the ocean waves and the lives of the creatures living within. In this beautifully written book, she brings empathy, insight, and an enchanting sense of wonderment to the bonds we inherently share with other beings--even those seeming far different from us."--Vint Virga, DVM "The Soul of All Living Creatures "
"Fascinating... touching... informative... Entertaining books like The Soul of an Octopus remind us of just how much we not only have to learn from fellow creatures, but that they can have a positive impact on our lives." --DAILY BEAST
"What makes this book unusual is that Montgomery doesn't try to answer this question [about consciousness] by sifting through piles of research. Instead, she ... listens. She develops extensive relationships with a handful of individual octopuses at the New England Aquarium, each with its own personality, its mundane dramas and tragedies. She records every small moment, treating each octopus like a character in a Jane Austen novel. The effect is wonderful. By the end, it's hard to shake the feeling that these bizarre creatures really do have rich internal lives, even if we still lack the imagination to grasp them entirely."--Vox
2016 Notable Book--American Library Association
"Journalistic immersion... allows Montgomery to deliver a deeper understanding of the 'other, ' thereby adding to our understanding of ourselves. A good book might illuminate something you knew little about, transform your world view, or move you in ways you didn't think possible. The Soul of an Octopus delivers on all three."--New Scientist
"Sy Montgomery's The Soul of an Octopus does for the creature what Helen Macdonald 's H Is for Hawk did for raptors."--New Statesman (UK)
"Naturalist Montgomery writes exceptionally affecting and enlightening books inspired by both rigorous scientific curiosity and enraptured wonder and empathy for all living beings...In prose as gripping and entwining as her
subjects' many arms, Montgomery chronicles the octopus' phenomenal strength, dexterity, speed... She also tells funny and moving stories about her friendships... Montgomery's uniquely intimate portrait of the elusive octopus profoundly recalibrates our perception of consciousness, communication, and community."

--Booklist (STARRED review)


A Notable Book of the Year--Huffington Post
"The Soul of an Octopus is an astoundingly beautiful read in its entirety, at once scientifically illuminating and deeply poetic, and is indeed a worthy addition to the best science books of the year."--Science Friday, NPR

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