This [book] is a treasure. It encapsulates the pure wonder of discovery and the strangeness of the world around us.
— Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books, Longlist and Shortlist, 2013
I wish [this book] had existed before I composed Written in Stone. Same spirit, but much better.
— Brian Switek
My favourite natural history book of the year.
— Robin Ince
The Book of Barely Imagined Beings is one that Pliny would have envied, Darwin applauded, and Borges relished. It celebrates the playful imagination of the universe, capable of dreaming up the zebrafish and the yeti crab; it also celebrates our delight in reading in claws and feathers lessons about our own miraculous self. In these days of doom and gloom, I can think of nothing more rejoicing than Caspar Henderson’s magical book.
—Alberto Manguel, author of The Library at Night
Caspar Henderson has written an utterly extraordinary book: a glorious and genre-bending
grimoire; a spell-book of species that entranced me from its first
page. Wonderful in the richest senses of the word, as well as
witty, moving, urgent and beautiful, The
Book of Barely Imagined Beings is
a celebration of nature's astonishing variety -- and a warning
as to what we are so rapidly losing.
— Robert Macfarlane, author of The
Wild Places and The Old Ways
If you're interested, as I am, in weird details about weird animals,
this is the book for you...Caspar Henderson takes us on an
eye-opening tour of real
animals that no sane human could ever have invented.
Waal, author of The Age of Empathy
A sublime rumination on existence. In twenty-seven exquisitely crafted
cameos, Caspar Henderson reveals the hidden wonders of life in all
its exuberant strangeness, at the same time illuminating our own
place in the world. Simply stunning.
— Callum Roberts, author of Ocean of Life: How our Seas are Changing
Wondrous, capacious and strange.
— Simon Critchley, author of The
Faith of the Faithless
A wonderful book! With the precision of a scientist, the elegance of an
artist and the minatory power of an Old Testament prophet, Caspar
Henderson exhorts us to pay attention to the other species on our
endangered planet and learn from them before it is too late.
— Richard Holloway, author of Leaving Alexandria: A Memoir of Faith and Doubt
Caspar Henderson is a zoological Borges, taking us on a fascinating and
exhilarating journey through the labyrinth of natural
history. Exploring an assembly of weird and wonderful
creatures, from the axolotl to the zebra fish, he offers wise and
surprising insights into everything from the science of synthetic
biology to the roots of our environmental crisis, with plenty of
witty asides along the way (I had no idea that the humble chicken is
the closest living relative of Tyrannosaurus rex). The
Book of Barely Imagined Beings is a brilliant and original meditation on what the animal world can
teach us about who we are and who we want to be, weaving an
unforgettable spell that will leave you thinking about nature - and
our place in it - in completely new ways.
Krznaric, author of The
Wonderbox: Curious Histories of How to Live.
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Praise for The Book of Barely Imagined Beings
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