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WTF, Evolution?! : A Theory of Unintelligible Design
by Mara Grunbaum


Overview -

We all have our off days. Why should Evolution be any different? Maybe Evolution got carried away with an idea that was just a little too crazy--like having the Regal Horned Lizard defend itself by shooting three-foot streams of blood from its eyes Read more...


 
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More About WTF, Evolution?! by Mara Grunbaum
 
 
 
Overview

We all have our off days. Why should Evolution be any different? Maybe Evolution got carried away with an idea that was just a little too crazy--like having the Regal Horned Lizard defend itself by shooting three-foot streams of blood from its eyes. Or maybe Evolution ran out of steam (Memo to Evolution: The Irrawaddy Dolphin looks like a prototype that should have been left on the drawing board). Or maybe Evolution was feeling cheeky--a fish with hands? Joke's on you, Red Handfish Or maybe Evolution simply goofed up: How else to explain the overgrown teeth of the babirusas that curl backward over their face? Oops.

Mara Grunbaum is a very smart, very funny science writer who celebrates the best--or, really, the worst--of Evolution's blunders. Here are more than 100 outlandish mammals, reptiles, insects, fish, birds, and other creatures whose very existence leaves us shaking our heads and muttering WTF? Ms. Grunbaum's especially brilliant stroke is to personify Evolution as a well-meaning but somewhat oblivious experimenter whose conversations with a skeptical narrator are hilarious.

For almost 4 billion years, Evolution has produced a nonstop parade of inflatable noses, bizarre genitalia, and seriously awkward necks. What a comedian


 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780761180340
  • ISBN-10: 0761180346
  • Publisher: Workman Publishing
  • Publish Date: October 2014
  • Page Count: 265
  • Dimensions: 5.5 x 7 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.85 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Humor > Form - Pictorial
Books > Science > Life Sciences - Evolution
Books > Photography > Subjects & Themes - Plants & Animals

 
BookPage Reviews

Spread the holiday cheer

Give the jokester in your life something to laugh about this holiday season by wrapping up one of these hilarious books. Because what’s better than the gift of laughter?

EMBRACE YOUR INNER GLUTTON
Jim Gaffigan offers up a tender ode to everyone’s most reliable lover in Food: A Love Story. The stand-up comedian and best-selling author (Dad Is Fat) simply wants to tell you how much he adores eating. And really, there’s no better man to take you on a tour de fat. “I can’t stop eating. I can’t. I haven’t been hungry in 12 years,” he tells us. Gaffigan goes over just about every aspect of the food world in chapters ranging from “The Buffet Rule,” in which he accepts the implicit challenge of the all-you-can-eat buffet, to “He’s Here!,” an homage to the beauty of food delivery. He also offers helpful advice on food choices, such as an informative guide to sausage and this pearl of wisdom concerning oysters: “I make a rule to not eat things that also make jewelry.” If you’re a big fan of Gaffigan, you may recognize some of the vignettes from his stand-up routines, but Food remains one of the funniest books about eating out there. If there’s someone in your life who may love tacos more than they love you, this is the book for them.

ODDBALL HUMOR
There are some freaky looking animals out there, and in WTF, Evolution?!: A Theory of Unintelligible Design, Mara Grunbaum presents her hypotheses on why Evolution, personified as a well-meaning blunderbuss, made some of Earth’s most bizarre creatures. The most probable answer? Evolution was overworked, very tired and probably a little drunk. Alongside more than 100 photos of strange animals, Evolution attempts to explain its reasons for creating creatures such as the uninspired sea potato, the duck-billed platypus and the truly unfortunate pigbutt worm. And if you thought humans were at the top of the evolutionary totem pole, think again. Evolution attests that its proudest accomplishment is the incredibly resilient, microscopic and strangely adorable tardigrade.

POSITIVELY POEHLER
Amy Poehler—“Saturday Night Live” alum, star of “Parks and Recreation” and third runner-up for the title of “Most Casual” in high school—has blessed us with her first book, Yes Please. A collection of essays, personal blunders, advice and even haiku, it is perhaps best described as a scrapbook of generally hilarious thoughts and experiences. Poehler shares the tale of her journey to comedic success, a few seminal childhood anecdotes and the behind-the-scenes scoop on her nine-year run on “SNL.” “Antonio Banderas smelled the best of any host,” she confides. But this book is more than just funny—it’s poignant, thoughtful and inspiring. Yes Please is divided into three parts: “Say Whatever You Want,” “Do Whatever You Like” and “Be Whoever You Are.” By the end of the book, you will want to do all three.

 

This article was originally published in the December 2014 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 
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