Complexity: The Evolution of Earth’s Biodiversity and the Future of Humanity

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Life on Earth is in a constant state of flux, forever evolving and adapting and dying off and emerging into prominence. And we continuously strive to unravel the myriad paths of evolution, tracing them back to their common roots. Complexity is the story of that journey.

The scale of this book is staggering. Burger crafts a timeline of the growth and proliferation of life in increasing complexity on Earth, taking us from single-celled creatures to the development of human culture and onward into the impact of human culture on this system. Berger also classifies different biomes across Earth and develops important new terminology, creating a vocabulary of evolution: old islands vs. new islands, shelters vs. opportunities, and so on.

Amidst all this solid science, there was one weird hiccup — the elementary school version of Columbus’s story — but thankfully, the sheer wealth of data, compelling science, and fascinating scientific history overshadowed that slight misstep. I mean, just the concept of how a single fossil leaf led to the theory of continental drift and Gondwanaland…that’s amazing.

Complexity is the story of diversity, of common ancestry, and of the drive to thrive. Absolutely fantastic scientific writing.


Reviewed By:

Author William C. Burger
Star Count 5/5
Format Hard
Page Count 380 pages
Publisher Prometheus Books
Publish Date 2016-06-14
ISBN 9781633881938
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue August 2016
Category Science & Nature
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