Eager reader of history, mystery, classics, biographies, steampunk, lit fic, science, scifi, and etc. My reviews are mostly positive--I rarely finish or write about books I don't enjoy. My TBR is too high for that.
It sounds strange to say I enjoyed reading this book about the increasingly profound and potentially devastating impact humans are having on our home planet, with an especial focus on the animals and plants who share Earth with us, but enjoy it I did. It’s a riveting topic, the history of our world and our species, and Elizabeth Kolbert has the knack of writing about science so it retains all its natural fascination while still being accessible to laypeople. She takes the reader with her back in time and around the world as she accompanies researchers in places ranging from the Andes mountains to the Great Barrier Reef.
One particular fact has really stuck with me--as human activity increasingly homogenizes the global environment by transporting plants and animals all over the planet biodiversity is increasing on the small scale, so that where you live is likely to have more species than it did formerly, but because invasive flora and fauna can wipe out native plants and animals global biodiversity is rapidly shrinking as the total number of species on the Earth continues to dwindle. And that’s the point of the title, The Sixth Extinction. There have been five periods of mass extinction on our planet and some scientists are finding evidence indicating that we may be on the cusp of or even in the midst of a sixth wave of mass die offs, this one caused by the activities of humans, a chilling realization.