Birdbooker Report 320-1

19 May 2014 by GrrlScientist, posted in Birdbooker Report

SUMMARY: Books, books, beautiful books! This is a list of biology, ecology, environment, natural history and animal books that are (or will soon be) available to occupy your bookshelves and your thoughts.


“Words in leather and wood”. Bookshelves in the “Long Room” at the old Trinity College Library in Dublin.
Image: Nic McPhee from Morris, MN, USA. 2007. (Creative Commons.)

Books to the ceiling,
Books to the sky,
My pile of books is a mile high.
How I love them! How I need them!
I'll have a long beard by the time I read them.

~ Arnold Lobel [1933-1987] author of many popular children's books.

Compiled by Ian "Birdbooker" Paulsen, the Birdbooker Report is a weekly report that has been published online for years, listing the wide variety of nature, natural history, ecology, animal behaviour, science and history books that have been newly released or republished in North America and in the UK. The books listed here were received by Ian during the previous week, courtesy of various publishing houses.

New and Recent Titles:

  1. Foster, Steven and James A. Duke. Peterson Field Guide to Medicinal Plants and Herbs of Eastern and Central North America, Third Edition. 2014. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Paperback: 456 pages. Price: $21.00 U.S. [Amazon UK; Amazon US/kindle US].
    PUBLISHER'S SUMMARY: Medicinal plants are increasingly well regarded as supplements and sometimes as alternatives for prescription drugs. Steven Foster and James A. Duke have used recent advances in the study of medicinal plants and their combined experience of over 100 years to completely update the Peterson Field Guide to Medicinal Plants. The clear and concise text identifies the key traits, habitats, uses, and warnings for more than 530 of the most significant medicinal plants in the eastern and central United States and Canada including both native and alien species. Seven hundred plus images, the organization-by-color system, and simplified warnings make identifying medicinal plants fast and easy.
    IAN'S RECOMMENDATION: A useful guide for those with an interest in the botany of the region.
  2. Raffaele, Herbert A. and James W. Wiley. Wildlife of the Caribbean. 2014. Princeton University Press. Paperback: 304 pages. Price: $19.95 U.S. [Amazon UK; Amazon US].
    PUBLISHER'S SUMMARY: This is the first comprehensive illustrated guide to the natural world of the Caribbean islands. It contains 600 vivid color images featuring 451 species of plants, birds, mammals, fish, seashells, and much more. While the guide primarily looks at the most conspicuous and widespread species among the islands, it also includes rarely seen creatures -- such as the Rhinoceros Iguana and Cuban Solenodon -- giving readers a special sense of the region's diverse wildlife.
    Each species is represented by one or more color photos or illustrations; details regarding its identification, status, and distribution; and interesting aspects of its life history or relationship to humans. In addition, an introductory section focuses on the unique characteristics of the Caribbean's fauna and flora, the threats faced by both, and some of the steps being taken to sustain the area's extraordinary natural heritage.
    Wildlife of the Caribbean is the essential field guide for learning about the living wonders in this area of the world.
    This book features:

    • The only guide of its kind for the Caribbean islands
    • 600 detailed color images feature 451 amazing species
    • Straightforward descriptions suitable for general audience
    • Compact size makes the guide easy to carry

    IAN'S RECOMMENDATION: A well illustrated introduction to the wildlife (and plants) of the region.

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This is a guest piece written by Ian "Birdbooker" Paulsen. Ian is an avid book collector who is especially well-known to the publishing world. He collects newly-published books about nature, animals and birds, science, and history, and he also collects children's books on these topics. Ian writes brief synopses about these books on his website, The Birdbooker Report.

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