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Fraser's Penguins: A Journey to the…
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Fraser's Penguins: A Journey to the Future in Antarctica.

by Fen Montaigne

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Fraser’s Penguins is the story of the Adélie penguins, in theory. It’s really both much more and much less. I confess, I picked up this volume up based on the word “penguins” in the title. For years, I’ve been embarrassed at how little I knew about penguins, even though I’m, well, Penguin Girl. Did I learn more than I know before I started the book, yes. Is it the best book to learn about penguins? No. Through a meandering narrative, Montaigne explores the history of the Antarctic through historic expeditions and their interactions with penguins, Fraser’s modern research, and the rapid climate shift that is threatening this species and many others today. Because he worked with Fraser’s research group, we are given some insight into this scientist’s research and the conclusions he draws, but it isn’t what I expected at all before I started to read. That’s ok. I learned quite a bit about a region and a species of which I was ignorant. I cautiously recommend this title to college students wanting to understand the process of field research, though be warned I only had a two-week Latin America field-assistant gig (for psycholinguistics) and Montaigne is a journalist. I’m sure there are other titles out there that provide better introduction to what field scientists (and assistants) do both on the job and off… But I enjoyed these insights into that life. When all the disparate parts of the book are brought together, I found Montaigne does paint a picture of the rapid climate change affecting Antarctica and what that means for the Adélies, several other species, and us. ( )
  pennyshima | Feb 28, 2013 |
On Saturday November 13 at 2:00 pm, Fen Montaigne will talk about his book at the Harvard Museum of Natural History.
  HMNHpr | Sep 27, 2010 |
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[T]his is no straightforward work of natural history with Fraser as heroic guide. It’s a morality tale, in which Fraser plays an unsociable Cassandra who’s entrusted his tidings to a sympathetic messenger. Luckily for readers, Montaigne has wrapped his portrait of a place on the brink of oblivion inside a penguin love fest.
added by lorax | editNew York Times, Elizabeth Royte (Dec 10, 2010)
 
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0805079424, Hardcover)

A dramatic chronicle of Antarctica's penguins that bears witness to climate changes that foreshadow our own future

The towering mountains and iceberg-filled seas of the western Antarctic Peninsula have for three decades formed the backdrop of scientist Bill Fraser's study of Adélie penguins. In that time, this breathtaking region has warmed faster than any place on earth, with profound consequences for the Adélies, the classic tuxedoed penguin that is dependent on sea ice to survive. During the Antarctic spring and summer of 2005-2006, author Fen Montaigne spent five months working on Fraser's field team, and he returned with a moving tale that chronicles the beauty of the wildest place on earth, the lives of the beloved Adélies, the saga of the discovery of the Antarctic Peninsula, and the story—told through Fraser's work—of how rising temperatures are swiftly changing this part of the world. Captivated by the tale of these polar penguins and a memorable field season in Antarctica, readers will come to understand that the fundamental changes Fraser has witnessed in the Antarctic will soon affect our lives.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:02:00 -0400)

A dramatic chronicle of Antarctica's penguins that bears witness to climate changes that foreshadow our own future. Scientist Bill Fraser has studied the Adelie penguins of the western Antarctic Peninsula for three decades. In that time, this breathtaking region has warmed faster than any place on earth, with profound consequences for the Adelies, the classic tuxedoed penguin that is dependent on sea ice to survive. During the Antarctic spring and summer of 2005-2006, author Fen Montaigne spent five months working on Fraser's field team, and he returned with a moving tale that chronicles the beauty of the wildest place on earth, the lives of the beloved Adelies, the saga of the discovery of the Antarctic Peninsula, and the story--told through Fraser's work--of how rising temperatures are swiftly changing this part of the world.--From publisher description.… (more)

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