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The Titles


Amazon Insects, by James L. Castner

The Reviews

Amazon Insects: A Photo Guide

by James L. Castner
ISBN = 0 9625150 1 9
Price = $15.00
Published = 2000
Review written = 27/May/2000
160 pages
Size =15 cm x 13 cm or 5.5 in x 5 in

This is a small, well presented book which it is hard to categorize as to audience. Despite what the author says in the introduction, I think it will primarily be of use to tourists with only a casual interest in invertebrates and not biologists. If the format of the book had been 4 times larger I would have said it would make a nice coffee table expose of rainforest insects. If it had contained ten times as many insects, or maybe 50 times as many, I could have said it was a useful guide to S. American Rainforest invertebrates. As it is the book falls somewhat unhappily between these two.

The insects chosen are beautiful, even spectacular, as are the few other invertebrates which are included. Also, there is no doubt about the quality of the photos - they are all excellent. Further to this, the text, though brief, is accurate and informative. This book's size and colourfulness not only make it something something acceptable to ordinary tourists to carry in their bags along with a bird and plant guide, but will also allow it to fill another other niche, as a present to a child. The high quality of the images and the small format could well make it an accessible and inspiring window into the fascinating world of rainforest invertebrates.

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