Kraken: The Curious, Exciting, and Slightly Disturbing Science of Squid

( 7 )

Overview

Kraken is the traditional name for gigantic sea monsters, and this book introduces one of the most charismatic, enigmatic, and curious inhabitants of the sea: the squid. The pages take the reader on a wild narrative ride through the world of squid science and adventure, along the way addressing some riddles about what intelligence is, and what monsters lie in the deep. In addition to squid, both giant and otherwise, Kraken examines other equally enthralling cephalopods, including the octopus and the cuttlefish, ...

See more details below
Hardcover
$13.65
BN.com price
(Save 37%)$21.95 List Price
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (40) from $1.99   
  • New (19) from $1.99   
  • Used (21) from $1.99   
Kraken: The Curious, Exciting, and Slightly Disturbing Science of Squid

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$12.49
BN.com price
(Save 43%)$21.95 List Price

Overview

Kraken is the traditional name for gigantic sea monsters, and this book introduces one of the most charismatic, enigmatic, and curious inhabitants of the sea: the squid. The pages take the reader on a wild narrative ride through the world of squid science and adventure, along the way addressing some riddles about what intelligence is, and what monsters lie in the deep. In addition to squid, both giant and otherwise, Kraken examines other equally enthralling cephalopods, including the octopus and the cuttlefish, and explores their otherworldly abilities, such as camouflage and bioluminescence. Accessible and entertaining, Kraken is also the first substantial volume on the subject in more than a decade and a must for fans of popular science.

Praise for KRAKEN: The Curious, Exciting, and Slightly Disturbing Science of Squid 

"Williams writes with a deft, supple hand as she surveys these spindly, extraordinary beasts and their world. She reminds us that the known world might be considerably larger than in the days of the bestiary-makers, but there is still room for wonder and strangeness."
-Los Angeles Times.com

"Williams's account of squid, octopuses, and other cephalopods abounds with both ancient legend and modern science." 
-Discover 

"[Exposes squid's] eerie similarities to the human species, down to eye structure and the all-important brain cell, the neuron." 
-New York Post 

"just the right mix of history and science" 
-ForeWord Reviews

"Kraken is an engaging and expansive biography of a creature that sparks our imagination and stimulates our curiosity. It's a perfect blend of storytelling and science." 
-Vincent Pieribone, author of Aglow in the Dark

KRAKEN extracts pure joy, intellectual exhilaration, and deep wonder from the most unlikely of places—squid. It is hard to read Wendy Williams's luminous account and not feel the thrill of discovery of the utterly profound connections we share with squid and all other living things on the planet. With wit, passion, and skill as a storyteller, Williams has given us a beautiful window into our world and ourselves. —Neil Shubin, author of the national bestseller "Your Inner Fish

Wendy William's KRAKEN weaves vignettes of stories about historical encounters with squid and octopus, with stories of today's scientists who are captivated by these animals. Her compelling book has the power to change your world-view about these creatures of the sea, while telling the gripping, wholly comprehensible story of the ways in which these animals have changed human medical history. —Mark J. Spalding, President, The Ocean Foundation

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Did you know that your brain bears a strong resemblance to that of the giant squid and that studying the squid's brain may offer insight into a cure for Alzheimer's? Environmental journalist Williams (Cape Wind) traces sightings of the giant squid throughout the centuries. This sea monster was long dismissed as a legend until a 19th-century naturalist reeled in one of the organism's ten appendages. Discussion of the anatomy, physiology, reproduction, evolution, and taxonomy of Architeuthis is provided, along with accounts of the author's visits to various scientific laboratories and descriptions of research studies being conducted on the animal. VERDICT This volume provides background information to whet readers' curiosity and can be supplemented by Richard Ellis's The Search for the Giant Squid, which is a more comprehensive study. On its own, this serves as a good introduction to the subject for general readers and an inspiration to young people interested in marine biology.—Judith Barnett, Pell Marine Science Lib., Univ. of Rhode Island, Kingston
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780810984653
  • Publisher: Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
  • Publication date: 3/1/2011
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 543,320
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Wendy Williams

Wendy Williams's writing has appeared on the front pages of the Boston Globe, the Christian Science Monitor, and The Baltimore Sun. She's also written for the New York Times, Parade Magazine, the Wall Street Journal, and Science. Williams is the coauthor of Cape Wind, which was named one of 2007's ten best environmental books by Booklist and one of the year's best science books by Library Journal. She lives on Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Introduction: From Vampire to Wallflower 8

Chapter 1 A Wonderful Fish 13

Chapter 2 A Saltwater Serengeti 30

Chapter 3 Blue Bloods 39

Chapter 4 Architeuthis on Ice 50

Chapter 5 Fuzzy Math and Tentacles 62

Chapter 6 Luminous Seas 78

Chapter 7 Diaphanous and Delicate 98

Chapter 8 Solving Frankenstein's Mystery 107

Chapter 9 Serendipitous Squid 121

Chapter 10 Heure d'Amour 132

Chapter 11 Playdate 147

Chapter 12 Fan Clubs and Film Stars 159

Chapter 13 One Lucky Sucker 170

Chapter 14 Smart Skin 184

Epilogue: Curious, Exciting-Yet Slightly Disturbing 196

Acknowledgments 201

Bibliography 204

Videos 212

Index 214

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 7 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(3)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 28, 2014

    Have a strong scientific background for maximum enjoyment.

    This book is very enjoyable. It goes into depth about many interesting traits of cephlapods. The one thing i would reccomend before deciding to purchase this book is to really enjoy it you should have a strong scientific background and be interested in the nervous system. I loved this book because it caused me to call on information that I had not thought about in years. It was also nice to read about the curent research going on that I thought was neglected when I was studying it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2011

    interesting material, terrible writing

    I enjoy popular science books, but this reads like a high school term paper. Couldn't finish it.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 8, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Great resource for would-be scientists of all ages

    Absolutely suited for would-be scientists of any age, this book is a great introduction to cephalopods. Lest you think you are not interested, consider this: as ocean temperatures rise and salinity changes, giant Humboldt squid are being found in huge numbers much farther north than ever before and have beached themselves as they did in Monterey Bay in 1992. Humboldt squid can reach up to 6 feet in length and weigh up to 100 pounds, and have a dangerous reputation for eating men alive, were one to fall from a boat into schooling squid. While "eating men alive" is probably untrue, their tentacles have teeth and barbs, and some divers find their wet suits punctured and blood drawn. The brain of squid is extremely complex and distributed in their arms: their tentacles operate with lightening-fast speed & independently of each other.

    But Humboldts have nothing on the colossal squid, which can reach 40-50 feet in length and have eyeballs as big as human heads. Fishermen of old used to tell stories of squid swallowing whole ships, or trying to. While the stories are discounted as mere tales, there is no denying the sheer brainpower and extraordinary abilities of enormous cephalopods operating in water. Wendy Williams briefly introduces us to famous octopi who have lived in some aquariums and talks a little about cuttlefish, which have a bone structure so light and yet so strong that materials scientists are using the principles learned from cuttlefish to build land structures.

    Until recently colossal squid have not been photographed in their feeding environment because of their extraordinary speed, evasion techniques, and the depth of their dives. But a Japanese scientist made headline news with his film of a colossal squid feeding in 2005. Photos and links are included in the book to view landmarks in our understanding of these mysterious and ingenious creatures.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 12, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)