TITLE: The Book of Humans: 4 Billion Years, 20,000 Genes, and the New Story of How We Became Us
AUTHOR: Adam Rutherford
EXPECTED PUBLICATION DATE: 19 March 2019
FORMAT: ARC ebook
NOTE: I received a copy of this book from NetGalley. This review is my honest opinion of the book.
"The author of A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived investigates what it means to be human—and the ways we are (and aren’t) unique among animals.
We like to think of ourselves as exceptional beings, but are we really more special than other animals? In this original and entertaining tour of life on Earth, Adam Rutherford explores how many of the things once considered to be exclusively human are not: We are not the only species that communicates, makes tools, uses fire, or has sex for reasons other than procreation. Evolution has, however, allowed us to develop a culture far more complex than any other observed in nature. The Book of Humans explains how we became the creatures we are today, uniquely able to investigate ourselves. Illuminating the latest genetic research, it is a thrilling account of what unequivocally fixes us as animals—and what makes us truly extraordinary. "
On the whole, this book provides an easy to read, overly simplified introduction to human evolution and what makes humans different (or not) from other animals. Each section covers a different aspect of "humaness", such as tool use, sex, speech development and cultural dissemination. I found the book a bit bland and lacking in substance as it did not provide any information that I hadn't come across in other books, journal, magazine or internet articles.