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Secret Chambers (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 31. Mai 2012

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"A fascinating follow-up to Brasier's book Darwin's Lost World" - Nature

Secret Chambers: The Inside Story of Cells and Complex Life was featured in The Quarterly Review of Biology.

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Martin Brasier is Professor of Palaeobiology at Oxford University. He is the author of Darwin's Lost World: The Hidden History of Animal Life.


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Amazon.com: HASH(0x95011f18) von 5 Sternen 3 Rezensionen
5 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x95011aa4) von 5 Sternen a thoughtful exposition through narrative 25. September 2012
Von Nigel Kirk - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
This is a readable, if initially patchy, account of early biological evolution, strung together through a narrative of the author's career travels.

In early chapters the comparison of a cell to an ocean-going vessel is laid on a little thick as metaphors like "lapses in procedure" and the "Chartroom" tend to confuse the real information about cell biology, even to the point that the writer incorrectly terms DNA as a binary code (p 48). The narrative, tracing the evolution of cell organelles and subsequently of more complex life, is punctuated by references to "secrets" in order to allow the author to further convey tales of discovery. This is mainly enjoyable, if a little old school. A 1970s survey of the Sargasso Sea negotiates turbulent waters while hinting at possible ways that the nucleus and organelles are integrated into eukaryote cells, an underwater reef is charted while explanations of symbiotic mechanisms are recounted. Further chapters trace growing evidence of global warming and then the narrative also warms as the author introduces the great Lynn Margulis, pulling together the cell symbiosis theory of organelles in the chapter, The Mangrove Tree. Further accounts of science reveal the human side of discovery, from mistakes, hard work to apparent fraud, all portrayed warmly and reminiscent of Stephen Jay Gould's Wonderful Life. Some of the author's observations of Australia, in particular of water management practice, irked me slightly as supercilious, however his rendition of the landscape, characters and geology, again, compensate. Ironically, the Australian landscape tested the author's own water management credentials, almost tragically.

This review is not an attempt to flag all of the intriguing topics this book covers but rather to convey its flavour. The author is a fine story teller with any hint of rambling compensated for by good exposition of evolutionary biology, and facilitated by geographical and biographical raconteuring. His final chapter rounds off the `boring billions' hypothesis that he teased out throughout the book. But it is his "efficiency is fatal" corollary, told through an odd "Albert and Emily" story, which provides elegant and credible conjecture on the less considered risks to future human evolution, which wins Secret Chambers five stars.
11 von 13 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x9501cd80) von 5 Sternen much story with facts sprinkled in 5. Juli 2012
Von Gary Odom - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
This book is a mishmash; combining history, anecdotes, facts, and the adventures of the author. The facts are often explained by analogy; a very difficult way to learn something with any sense of accuracy.

I dislike such books, as I get bored with the stories (the history retelling is rather scatter shot in this book), and can never find my way back to some fact, as the book's organization does not allow it (the section titles are story based).

If you like reading non-fiction books for storytelling, with some interesting tidbits thrown in, this may be a book for you. If you want to learn much of anything about cellular biology, the supposed subject of this book, read something else.
HASH(0x9524481c) von 5 Sternen The origins of life on earth brilliantly studied back 2 billion years and elucidated in its ... 10. April 2016
Von C J KRUYTBOSCH - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
The origins of life on earth brilliantly studied back 2 billion years and elucidated in its gradual evolution into the eukariocyte cell.
Our human common genetic origins with bacteria and plants remains the most amazing biologic fact , which should encourage the human to take more interest and have more curiosity about all life forms , and be more sympathetic to retain biodiversity in all its magnificent forms.
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