“Sex in the Sea: Our Intimate Connection with Sex-Changing Fish, Romantic Lobsters, Kinky Squid, and Other Salty Erotica of the Deep”

“Sex in the Sea: Our Intimate Connection with Sex-Changing Fish, Romantic Lobsters, Kinky Squid, and Other Salty Erotica of the Deep”

Nine new books about animals

  • By William Hageman Chicago Tribune
  • Friday, February 19, 2016 1:13pm
  • Life

New animal books explore the historical and sociological significance of animals. Plus, there’s room for some whimsy — as well as a look into seaworthy sex lives:

“Once They Were Hats: In Search of the Mighty Beaver” by Frances Backhouse (ECW Press): Man nearly drove the beaver to extinction, hardly the way to treat a creature that was a huge part of America’s early days. Backhouse gives the little buck-toothed rodent the credit it deserves in an intelligent and interesting look at Castor canadensis.

“The Secret Lives of Animals: 1,001 Tidbits, Oddities &Amazing Facts about North America’s Coolest Animals” by Stacy Tornio and Ken Keffer (Falcon Guides): Geared for kids ages 4-12, Tornio and Keffer’s book is chockablock with things you probably didn’t know. A manatee’s lungs stretch nearly the entire length of its body. There. It will keep the kids — and you — fascinated. Illustrated by Rachel Riordan.

“Heal: The Vital Role of Dogs in the Search for Cancer Cures” by Arlene Weintraub (ECW Press): Science and health writer Weintraub wanted to learn more about a drug that was being tested to combat a cancer that struck both dogs and humans. The more she researched, the more she was fascinated by the role dogs play in cancer research. What she learned makes for interesting reading for anyone interested in science or animals.

“Do Unto Animals: A Friendly Guide to How Animals Live, and How We Can Make Their Lives Better” by Tracey Stewart (Artisan): Stewart looks at the animals in our lives — the ones in our homes, our yards and on farms — from the perspective of an animal advocate, and gives readers not only facts and advice, but also smart and caring ways to improve animals’ existences. The book also features more than 300 beautiful illustrations by Lisel Ashlock.

“Sex in the Sea: Our Intimate Connection with Sex-Changing Fish, Romantic Lobsters, Kinky Squid, and Other Salty Erotica of the Deep” by Marah J. Hardt (St. Martin’s Press, to be published Feb. 9): Oh, the shenanigans that go on down below. From lobsters spraying urine on each other as part of their mating ritual to horseshoe crabs’ orgies to the blue whale’s 12-foot penis, Hardt covers the waterfront.

“The Real Planet of the Apes: A New Story of Human Origins” by David R. Begun (Princeton University Press): Begun, a professor of anthropology at the University of Toronto, bucks prevailing thought in his book, which theorizes that our ancestors left Africa and migrated to Europe for 10 million years. Backed by 30 years of field work and research, Begun’s theory is worth a look.

“American Zoo: A Sociological Safari” by David Grazian (Princeton University Press): Sociologist Grazian took his young son on a cross-country excursion to visit more than two dozen zoos and aquariums. He saw that zoos have been transformed in recent years from sad places with cramped, barren cages to more open, expansive exhibits. But he also noted man’s strange relationship with nature. His book explores the issues.

“Evolution: The Whole Story” by Steve Parker (Firefly): Editor Parker has assembled the work of 20 contributing scientists in “Evolution,” an approachable and interesting 576-page study of life on Earth, now and then. Diagrams, photos, charts and text all add up to a fascinating study.

“Cute Emergency: Bad Day? The Doctor Is In” by Tony Heally (Three Rivers Press): An extension of his popular Cute Emergency Twitter account that shared “aw-inspiring” photos of cute critters, Heally offers 176 pages of dogs, cats and other animals — yaks! pigs! hedgehogs! — that will make the reader smile.

Talk to us

More in Life

Collius_boys.jpg: Carolea’s father Collius (Jay Jenkins, center) has selected Ambrosius (Ian Wight, right) as his choice for his daughter, but she is in love with Nectarean (Josias Allestad) in Red Curtain’s production of “A MidWinter Night’s Dream,” Dec. 1-23.
Music, theater and more: What’s happening in Snohomish County

”A Midwinter Night’s Dream” opens Friday at Red Curtain Arts Center in Marysville.

Siblings Qingyun, left, and Ruoyun Li, 12 and 13, respectively, are together on campus at Everett Community College on Thursday, Oct. 19, 2023, in Everett, Washington. The two are taking a full course load at the community college this semester. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Siblings, age 12 and 13, are youngest students at EvCC campus

Qingyun Li was 11 when he scored a perfect 36 on the ACT test. His sister, Ruoyun, was one point away.

A family walks through the Wintertide lights Thursday, Dec. 1, 2022, at Legion Park in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Wintertide Lights returns for the month of December in Everett

The free family event is open nightly at Evergreen Arboretum and Gardens in Legion Park.

Leslie Davis, left, and Lyndsay Lamb, stars of "Unsellable Houses." (Rachael Jones / HGTV)
‘Unsellable Houses’ seeks flippable Snohomish County homes for Season 5

Leslie Davis and Lyndsay Lamb are searching for homeowners for next season’s one-hour episodes, where houses go from stagnant to sold.

2024 Hyundai Kona Limited FWD (Hyundai)
2024 Hyundai Kona Limited FWD

The Hyundai Kona Limited has been updated for the 2024 model year, but thankfully, retains its quirkiness.

Early 20th century Puffy lamps don’t need to be on to brighten up a room

With three-dimensional designs painted on the shade, lamps like this don’t need darkness to provide decorative value.

Great Plant Pick: Heritage birch

also called white bark river birch, or betula… Continue reading

The 2024 Subaru Crosstrek Wilderness comes with raised ladder-type roof rails and Yokohama Geolandar all-terrain tires. (Subaru)
2024 Subaru Crosstrek Wilderness gives the compact more capability

Upgraded suspension, 9.3 inches of ground clearance and a reengineered drivetrain are among the changes.

The Vienna State Opera hosts performances in the evening and tours during the day. (Dominic Arizona Bonuccelli)
Rick Steves’ Europe: Exploring the musical soul of Austria

In Vienna, there are always plenty of ways to enjoy great music … on any budget.

Della Terra, a Snohomish farm-to-table catering business, is offering a full Thanksgiving meal with hearty Pacific Northwest entrees, seasonal sides and a farmers market salad. (Joanna Monger Photography)
The comforting and important rituals of giving thanks

I hope you took some time this Thanksgiving, between helpings of turkey and mashed potatoes, to consider what you appreciate and value in your life.

Sisters Greta, Willow and Solana Gothard have been playing music together since childhood, expanding from early violin lessons to playing guitar, mandolin, djembe, bodhran and more alongside vocal harmonies. 

The new album “A Celtic Christmas” is the sisters’ 10th, featuring a selection of traditional carols rendered in the band’s signature, ethereal style.  (Knecht Creative)
Home for the holidays with the Gothard Sisters

The Edmonds trio brings tidings of Celtic comfort and joy with a new Christmas album and concert

He had to clean his Airbnb. Can he get the cleaning fee back?

Tyson Love’s Airbnb is a mess. Worse, the company will only refund $14 of his rental fee, even though he bought cleaning supplies and cleaned the rental himself. Is that fair?

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.