"Surreal. You won't be dissapointed." --San Francisco Book Review
Featured in The Society for the History of Natural History's April 2014 Newsletter.
"The edited volume of Letters from the Malay Archipelago will probably be of interest primarily to historians of science. ... The letters are grouped by the country from which Wallace wrote or received them. This will allow a reader an extremely efficient way of accessing particular letters either by the correspondent or by the country; something researchers will appreciate." --Reports of the National Center for Science Education
From the Inside Flap
David Attenborough, in his Introduction
'The book is a valuable addition to the literature on Wallace. The editing is scrupulous and detailed but not intrusive. The texts have been retranscribed and corrected. The illustrations are attractive and judiciously chosen. This is an excellent introduction to the formative years.'
Peter Raby, Literary Review
Between 1854 and 1862 the great Victorian naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace travelled in the Malay Archipelago, observing and collecting the wildlife. It was on this famous journey that Wallace independently came up with the concept of natural selection and wrote the fateful letter to Darwin which was to precipitate the publication of The Origin of Species. The letter to Darwin is lost, but collected here in a new transcription are the surviving letters from that journey, both written to and by this quintessential Victorian naturalist and traveller.
Through the letters, we glimpse the excitement and frustrations of Wallace's journey; his enthusiasm and dedication; and the exhilarating discussion of new ideas. More widely, we experience a Victorian world at the inception of a revolution in biology.