Olivia Judson uses a unique approach to present the scientific research and mating habits of various species and insects in the animal kingdom. Using an evolution-based approach and Darwinian theory, Judson begins each chapter and section with a “Dear Abby” style of letter writing. The writer is asking Dr. Tatiana for advice of a sexual nature. The good doctor’s response comes in the form of ample description, research and detail about the sexual uniqueness in a variety of animals.
I loved the humorous approach to often delicate sexual subjects. Through the unique writing and clever use of humor, Olivia Judson presents a tremendous amount of scientific research and information. While the detail is often too intricate and borders on excessive, the variety and breadth of knowledge that is covered is quite fascinating.
Appeal Factors: Issue-Oriented, Witty, Bawdy
According to Amazon.com, read-alikes for this book include: Why Evolution is True by Jerry Coyne, Sexual Selections by Marlene Zuk and The Red Queen: Sex and the Evolution of Human Nature by Matt Ridley (accessed May 10, 2013).
I chose this book because it was selected as a book discussion group for my Readers’ Advisory class. This required reading was chosen as a popular nonfiction title.