The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs: A New History of a Lost World by Steve BrusatteIn this captivating narrative (enlivened with more than seventy original illustrations and photographs), Steve Brusatte, a young American paleontologist who has emerged as one of the foremost stars of the field—naming fifteen new species and leading groundbreaking scientific studies and fieldwork—masterfully tells the complete, surprising, and new history of the dinosaurs, drawing on cutting-edge science to dramatically bring to life their lost world and illuminate their enigmatic origins, spectacular flourishing, astonishing diversity, cataclysmic extinction, and startling living legacy.
The Truth About Animals: Stoned Sloths, Lovelorn Hippos, and Other Tales from the Wild Side of Wildlife by Lucy CookeHumans have gone to the Moon and discovered the Higgs boson, but when it comes to understanding animals, we've still got a long way to go. Whether we're seeing a viral video of romping baby pandas or a picture of penguins "holding hands," it's hard for us not to project our own values--innocence, fidelity, temperance, hard work--onto animals. So you've probably never considered if moose get drunk, penguins cheat on their mates, or worker ants lay about. They do--and that's just for starters. In The Truth About Animals, Lucy Cooke takes us on a worldwide journey to meet everyone from a Colombian hippo castrator to a Chinese panda porn peddler, all to lay bare the secret--and often hilarious--habits of the animal kingdom. Charming and at times downright weird, this modern bestiary is perfect for anyone who has ever suspected that virtue might be unnatural.
Tesla: Inventor of the Modern
by Richard Munson
Nikola Tesla invented the radio, robots, and remote control. His electric induction motors run our appliances and factories, yet he has been largely overlooked by history. In Tesla, Richard Munson presents a comprehensive portrait of this farsighted and underappreciated mastermind.
When his first breakthrough―alternating current, the basis of the electric grid―pitted him against Thomas Edison’s direct-current empire, Tesla’s superior technology prevailed. Unfortunately, he had little business sense and could not capitalize on this success. His most advanced ideas went unrecognized for decades: forty years in the case of the radio patent, longer still for his ideas on laser beam technology. Although penniless during his later years, he never stopped imagining. In the early 1900s, he designed plans for cell phones, the Internet, death-ray weapons, and interstellar communications. His ideas have lived on to shape the modern economy.
Who was this genius? Drawing on letters, technical notebooks, and other primary sources, Munson pieces together the magnificently bizarre personal life and mental habits of the enigmatic inventor.
Milk! A 10,000-Year Food Fracas by Mark KurlanskyAccording to the Greek creation myth, we are so much spilt milk; a splatter of the goddess Hera's breast milk became our galaxy, the Milky Way. But while mother's milk may be the essence of nourishment, it is the milk of other mammals that humans have cultivated ever since the domestication of animals more than 10,000 years ago, originally as a source of cheese, yogurt, kefir, and all manner of edible innovations that rendered lactose digestible, and then, when genetic mutation made some of us lactose-tolerant, milk itself.
Before the industrial revolution, it was common for families to keep dairy cows and produce their own milk. But during the nineteenth century mass production and urbanization made milk safety a leading issue of the day, with milk-borne illnesses a common cause of death. Pasteurization slowly became a legislative matter. And today milk is a test case in the most pressing issues in food politics, from industrial farming and animal rights to GMOs, the locavore movement, and advocates for raw milk, who controversially reject pasteurization.
Profoundly intertwined with human civilization, milk has a compelling and a surprisingly global story to tell, and historian Mark Kurlansky is the perfect person to tell it. Tracing the liquid's diverse history from antiquity to the present, he details its curious and crucial role in cultural evolution, religion, nutrition, politics, and economics.
The Attacking Ocean: The Past, Present, and Future of Rising Sea Levels by Brian FaganAn eye-opening look at how rising sea levels have changed the planet -- and how humans have themselves contributed to ever-changing shorelines -- over the last 15,000 years.
Readers with an interest in global warming, climate change, and anthropology will find much to ponder here.
Deep: Freediving, Renegade Science, and What the Ocean Tells Us about Ourselves by James NestorCompetitive free diving is a sport in which participants plunge, unburdened by scuba gear, to depths of up to 300 feet in the span of a single breath. In Deep, author James Nestor begins training for free diving -- and in the process uncovers much about the enduring relationship between humans and the ocean.
The Ocean of Life: The Fate of Man and the Sea by Callum RobertsBiologist Callum Roberts documents the past, present, and future of the world's oceans, which continue to undergo dramatic environmental changes.
Filled with fascinating tidbits (albatross chicks eat an average of 70 pieces of plastic per meal) as well as meticulous scientific detail, The Ocean of Life makes a powerful case for ocean conservation.
Contact the Library for more great titles!