Wednesday, April 19, 2017

#ComicsWednesday: Primates: the fearless science of Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Biruté Galdikas by Jim Ottaviani & Maris Wicks

Jim Ottaviani has made a career of taking the lives and complex discoveries of scientists and mathematicians and translating them into accessible graphic novels (with the help of various talented artists). In Primates, Ottaviani worked with Maris Wicks to tell the story of three groundbreaking primatologists: Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Biruté Galdikas.

This book will appeal to anyone with an interest in natural science, women's history, or animals, whether or not you know the difference between a chimpanzee and an orangutan. Ottaviani and Wicks captured some of the difficult realities of scientific fieldwork in remote locations, while giving the highlights of our relatively recent understanding of primate behavior.

While this comic is kept in our children's collection, I'd recommend that parents read this book along with younger readers who might have questions about such difficult topics as sexism, gorilla poaching, and Dian Fossey's death. Though Wicks's engaging, cartoon-ish art helps to keep the tone from becoming too dark, this book is probably a better fit for tweens, teens, and interested adults.

Primates serves as an excellent introduction to the lives and works of three incredible, inspiring female scientists that readers of all ages are likely to enjoy. You'll probably find yourself looking through the provided bibliography in order to learn even more!

~Sarah, Adult Services

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