The Beak of the Finch: A Story of Evolution in Our Time

The Beak of the Finch: A Story of Evolution in Our Time

by Jonathan Weiner
3.4 14

Paperback(Reprint)

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Overview

The Beak of the Finch: A Story of Evolution in Our Time by Jonathan Weiner

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize
Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize

On a desert island in the heart of the Galapagos archipelago, where Darwin received his first inklings of the theory of evolution, two scientists, Peter and Rosemary Grant, have spent twenty years proving that Darwin did not know the strength of his own theory. For among the finches of Daphne Major, natural selection is neither rare nor slow: it is taking place by the hour, and we can watch.

In this dramatic story of groundbreaking scientific research, Jonathan Weiner follows these scientists as they watch Darwin's finches and come up with a new understanding of life itself. The Beak of the Finch is an elegantly written and compelling masterpiece of theory and explication in the tradition of Stephen Jay Gould.

With a new preface.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780679733379
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 05/28/1995
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 93,219
Product dimensions: 7.96(w) x 5.14(h) x 0.74(d)

About the Author

Jonathan Weiner is one of the most distinguished popular-science writers in the country: his books have won the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. His writing has appeared in The New Yorker, Slate, Time, The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, The New Republic, Scientific American, Smithsonian, and many other newspapers and magazines, and he is a former editor at The Sciences. He is the author of The Beak of the Finch; Time, Love, Memory; Long for This World; His Brother's Keeper; The Next One Hundred Years; and Planet Earth. He lives in New York, where he teaches science writing at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism.

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Beak of the Finch 3.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a freshman in high school, my youth group at church began a discussion on evolution and creationism. Suddenly, I was worried. It seemed I could not be a Christian and believe in evolution. I spoke to my biology teacher and he offered his copy of 'The Beak of the Finch'. At first, I wondered if I was getting over my head, but I decided to read it and I sure am glad I did. It opened my mind up, learning of Darwin's predicament, and even his own reactions to his own findings, in a still heavily creationistic world. I recomend this to any one, who wants to learn more of evolution or just for a good read- however, it may not be for those who are uninterested in science.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have been assigned this book over my SPRING BREAK for my AP Bio class.... I read the first couple of chapters and its interesting in some way, but i wouldn't recommend it to people who are not interested in science...
Guest More than 1 year ago
I beg to differ with the folks who said this book was 'filled with statistics' or too scientifically-written. This is a good narrative about a scientific undertaking, and reading it as a scientist, I think it borderlines as a little too flaky in parts. Overall, I really enjoyed the read--it gave you all the gory details about how it must have felt to be Peter Grant working in the Galapagos Islands.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one of the best popular science books ever written. It is also a beautiful piece of literature and deserved The Pulitzer Prize it received. Bravo to Jonathan Weiner!
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Guest More than 1 year ago
i had to read this book for my apes course, and i fell asleep reading it. it may be filled with lots of factual, interesting points, but it presents them in a highly scientific, and overall boring manner. if it was less scientific without the extreme details, it would be a much better book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a well written book but as it says in its overview, it is the story of two Princeton University scientists studying evolution. I think it should be classified as fiction. Unfortunately it fails to address that the “evidence of evolution”, increased beak size following a drought, returned to normal as the rains returned. There was no net long term change in morphology thus no evidence of evolution. In fact research shows that 2 species are actually interbreeding which will lead to convergence of these 2 species, the opposite of evolution. I try to find research that can address some serious concerns I have about evolution such as how low energy carbon compounds can magically form protein or how genetic mutation can lead to evolution rather than cancer. I’m not finding it so I am taking creationism a lot more seriously. This book wasn’t really accurate in its presentation or evidence of evolution.
Guest More than 1 year ago
it was sooo dull it felt like a book full of statistics. so uninteresting