Top positive review
6 of 8 people found this helpful
Very good but with a few minor issues
on June 19, 2012
It was some time since I last read a book on this subject and I felt inspired to check up on what is the latest in this field. Chris Stringer is well qualified to give me just that. This is a good book, easy to read and almost to the point. Mr Stringer manages to paint a rather full picture of the current state of this fascination research. His writing is easy to follow and he is not afraid to tell us what his personal view is on a number of issues. This is not a science writer, this is a scientist. He is also humble enough to give credit to other researchers in this field so overall, I don't think he has left anything out even if the book is just 300+ pages.
The book is not for those who have no knowledge on the subject at all. Mr Stringer starts from a level that means you must have some knowledge about Neanderthals, Cro-magnon etc. Not much but if you ask for a book teaching you all the basics this is not the one. That does not mean you should not read it but you might wish that you read some basic information first.
There are two issues that I did find somewhat odd. One is an illustration showing the human evolutionary tree. It is on page 266, almost in the end of the book. Why this one were not on page 20 instead in order to give more structure to the following text is a little hard to understand.
Another thing that is slightly confusing is that he has chosen not to tell the story in a chronological order (from oldest time to today) but instead jumps back an forth in various time eras and in different localities. This is at times also a little confusing and hard to understand. Not being a scientist, I would probably have liked the book to be told in the order of how we developed. But having said that, I still enjoyed reading it.
I have already recommended this one to a number of my friends with similar interests. You should read it too.