Sentient: What Animals Reveal About Human SensesJackie Higgins
Spellbinding . . . More than any other book, [Sentient] has made me think differently about the world this year.' - Financial Times Best Books of the Year 'Lyrical and lucid . . . Higgins makes popular science accessible.' - Observer The peacock mantis shrimp can throw a punch that can fracture aquarium walls. The great grey owl can hear many decibels lower than the human ear. The star-nosed mole's miraculous nose allows it to catch worms in as little as 120 milliseconds. In Sentient, Jackie Higgins assembles a menagerie of zoological creatures - from land, air, sea and all four corners of the globe - to understand what it means to be human. In it, we also meet the four-eyed spookfish and its dark vision, the vampire bat and its remarkable powers of touch, as well as the common octopus, the Goliath catfish and the duck-billed platypus. Each zoological marvel illustrates the surprising sensory powers that lie within us and enables us to engage with the world in ways we never knew possible.
Review: The first rule of popular science is to reveal the wonder and mystery of the world. For that reason, Sentient, written by photographer and wildlife film-maker Jackie Higgins, is my personal pick of the year -- Simon Ings.