“In [Flannery’s] chest beats the wayfaring heart of a discoverer, and in this book, which details his colorful adventures among the flora and fauna of the South Pacific Islands, he reminds us that even right here on Earth, incredible things are waiting to be known.” -Newsweek
“Flannery’s account pieces together the jigsaw puzzle of South Pacific geological, natural, and cultural history with well-grounded knowledge as well as respect and wonder for the natural world. We are lucky to have such an exuberant explorer to illuminate the intricate network of life in the South Pacificand the perils and possibilities that life embodies on this precious planet we share.” -National Geographic Traveler (Book of the Month)
“Part travel diary and part field notebook, Among the Islands is a rollicking good adventure-science readsomething like what you’d get if Charles Darwin starred in an Indiana Jones flick.” -Audubon Magazine
"Flannery is not just an internationally acclaimed zoologist; he’s also an adventurer and storyteller who has discovered creatures no other human has seen. His latest record of exploration traces the beginnings of his career during the 1980s and takes him through more than a decade of study in remote islands of the South Pacific.
Flannery’s writing is generous and exuberant. His enthusiasm is enough to infect even the least science-minded of readers
A breathtaking, informative tour of faraway lands."Kirkus Reviews
"Tim Flannery is a crackerjack storyteller."Publishers Weekly
"Australian field zoologist and conservationist Flannery cements his reputation as a true descendant of the great nineteenth-century naturalists and explorers with this look back at his expeditions to southwest Pacific islands.
Flannery’s prose is electric, aptly combining history, politics, and wide-eyed excitement as he recalls these experiences.
Among the Islands exemplifies the sort of writing that was once commonplace, when adventure meant contributing to our knowledge of the world. Absolutely fantastic in every sense of the word."Booklist (starred review)
“A story told with Flannery’s signature clarity and lively readability
. this is scientific adventure-writing at its finest.” -Open Letters Monthly
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
From the tides of the South Pacific to the impossible peaks of jungle islands, one zoologist sets out to find the living riches of the planet. Flannery (Here on Earth, 2011, etc.) is not just an internationally acclaimed zoologist; he's also an adventurer and storyteller who has discovered creatures no other human has seen. His latest record of exploration traces the beginnings of his career during the 1980s and takes him through more than a decade of study in remote islands of the South Pacific. There, he encountered untouched environments and their native inhabitants, and he renders these lost worlds in full color. Often humorous, he provides anecdotes of crocodiles waiting for their prey, mountains of bat feces and islands crawling with giant rats. Flannery's writing is generous and exuberant. His enthusiasm for the subject is contagious enough to infect even the least science-minded of readers, but you can be sure his aim is not simply to entertain. "To some," he writes, "our adventures might seem to be nothing more than a romantic frolic. After all, why should anyone care about an obscure creature found only on a distant island? Would the world lose anything with its extinction?" The answer is most emphatically yes, and the author situates obscure animals in a worldwide perspective that entwines all living things, including humans, together. Flannery's research efforts contribute significantly to continuing conservation efforts, and he is clearly grateful and appreciative to be a part of it. A breathtaking, informative tour of faraway lands.