Although nominally about the material designated in its title, this book is no mere collection of statistics, but contains wide-ranging discussions of evolutionary psychology, which Daly & Wilson use as the framework for an understanding of the phenomenon of homicide. So if the propensity to homicide is bred into the human race by millennia of natural selection, so also are other phenomena with which society struggles, like sexual harassment. I guess my point is that this book is about homicide and more. It's also lucid and even witty. It reads like a detective story, which indeed it is, but the culprit here is manifold rather than singular. The book will also furnish guidance to those who subscribe to the view that arrest, conviction, and incarceration will have only limited effects on the homicide rate, and that homicide be treated also as a public health problem. Daly & Wilson consider anthropological data from around the world and historical data as well to draw their inferences. In the most common type of murder the perpetrator and victim are young men who know each other and are in (ostensible) conflict over some trivial matter. But Daly & Wilson say that murder is the rare outcome of a common situation where two men face off against each other with each trying to appear more formidable and dangerous than the other. The (biological) reason they behave as they do is that such behavior causes them to acquire (or keep) control of the reproductive behavior of their women. Think about it: wimps, who allowed their women to be taken away from themselves, left no wimp genes in the gene pool. Of course there are a lot of other kinds of murders: children are occasionally murdered, sometimes by their natural parents, but more often by step-parents. It appears that there is a basis for the ever-popular myth (in many cultures, not just western European) of the evil step-parent. Husbands murder wives, but this seems to be a case of violence being used to control the wife's reproductive behavior, and the violence gets out of hand. When wives murder husbands (a rarer occurrence) it tends to be defensive in nature. Wonderful book! Very thought provoking.