A Natural History of the First Four Billion Years of Life on Earth

By Richard Fortey
(Vintage, Paperback, 9780375702617, 400pp.)

Publication Date: September 7, 1999

List Price: $17.00*
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A "New York Times Book Review" Editors' Choice
"Extraordinary. . . . Anyone with the slightest interest in biology should read this book."--"The New York Times Book Review"
"A marvelous museum of the past four billion years on earth--capacious, jammed with treasures, full of learning and wide-eyed wonder."--"The Boston Globe"
From its origins on the still-forming planet to the recent emergence of Homo sapiens--one of the world's leading paleontologists offers an absorbing account of how and why life on earth developed as it did. Interlacing the tale of his own adventures in the field with vivid descriptions of creatures who emerged and disappeared in the long march of geologic time, Richard Fortey sheds light upon a fascinating array of evolutionary wonders, mysteries, and debates. Brimming with wit, literary style, and the joy of discovery, this is an indispensable book that will delight the general reader and the scientist alike.
"A drama bolder and more sweeping than Gone with the Wind . . . a pleasure to read."--"Science"
"A beautifully written and structured work . . . packed with lucid expositions of science."--"Natural History.

About the Author
Richard Fortey is a paleontologist at the Natural History Museum in London. His many books include "Earth: An Intimate History", "The Hidden Landscape: A Journey into the Geological Past", and "Trilobite: Eyewitness to Evolution".
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