Monday, 21 June 2010

Bugs Britannica

I have just treated myself to the 512 page Bugs Britannica by Richard Mabey and Peter Marren (Chatto & Windus, May 2010) – at a great discount from Amazon. It follows on from the excellent Birds Britannica and Flora Britannica (and the two equally good though unrelated works entitled Fauna Britannica). It’s a wonderful book and promises to be my book of the year. The word ‘bugs’ is used in its very broadest sense and the book contains all manner of invertebrates and even some ‘nearly vertebrates’. It’s easier to say what the book is not than to say what it is exactly – it’s not a field guide; it is not a coffee-table glossy (despite it’s large size and large pretty pictures); and it’s not a scientific dissertation. It is a general ramble through the world of myths, poetry, and history as they relate to each group of invertebrates. I think the best description is that in the Sunday Times – “outstanding cultural guide to the interaction of invertebrates and man”.

So far I am about a fifth of the way through so it will be a while before it ends up on my book blog.


  1. sounds like the perfect 'coffee table' book though, one you can pick up when enjoying an evening drink, skim a page or two and then put back down. congradulations

  2. One of my favorite books from childhood was a "bug book." But, I was a weird child. I told everyone, who would listen that I wanted to be an entomologist. It's been a long while since I have thought about those days. Thanks. I think I just might get a copy.


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