Sunday, October 13, 2013

Book Review, October 13, 2013: Scatter, Adapt and Remember

Subtitle: "How Humans Will Survive a Mass Extinction"

The author, Annalee Newitz,points out that people (humans and our proto-human ancestors), as well as many other species, have survived calamities many times in Earth's history.

And this is how humans do it: Scatter, adapt, and remember.

Madame L recommends this book if you haven't read much history and anthropology, or if you have little or no background in biology or geology or astronomy.  Also, it would be a great read if you have lots of spare time for reading a lot of fluff mixed in with a few good ideas.

But here's the thing, Dear Readers:  Madame L knows you DO love to read, but also that you have a basic education so you're aware of the basic facts about biology, geology, astronomy, history, and anthropology. Madame L also knows that, as much as you love to read, you want to read new ideas and ideas that will make you think in a new way about the world. And that means you don't want to waste your time reading old news. Because old news is, of course, not news at all.

So, here, Madame L will tell you, without any more details, because she only skimmed through the book once she realized it had very little new to offer, and has already returned it to her local library, that the title says it all.

Next time, Madame L will write about a book or books that she will recommend, including novels about how people survive apocalyptic or near-apocalyptic events. (And, interestingly, the survivors are scattered, they do adapt well, and they do remember...but they also do a lot of other things.)

Until then, please send Madame L suggestions for books you would like her to review and please send your own book reviews.

1 comment:

AskTheGeologist said...

Three comments on this one, too:

1. I love short book summaries that have critical substance in just a few sentences. By this I mean the "new" news that makes you revisit your understanding of the world. So thanx for that.

2. About 74,000 years ago, Toba volcano (in modern Indonesia) erupted. Like Yellowstone, Katmai, and Veniaminof, it's a Supervolcano. Gene-altering studies suggest that the proto-human population at that time narrowed down to between 2,500 and 10,000 individuals. Descriptions of the onset of the Millennium are consistent with a Supervolcano eruption.

3. I've written a post-apocalypse book myself, under s thinly-disguised pseudonym. Even has Mormons in it. Go to and search for "Homo Fulcrum". If interested, I'll send it for free in PDF form.