Evolution by Sarah Darwin and Eva-Maria Sadowski

Evolution by Sarah Darwin and Eva-Maria Sadowski – at a glance

The School Reading Lists’ five word review: Non-fiction, science, geology, animals, nature.
Children’s book title: Evolution.
Children’s authors: Sarah Darwin and Eva-Maria Sadowski
Children’s illustrator: Olga Baumert.
Genre: Non fiction, Science.
Published by: What on Earth Books
ISBN: 9781912920532.
Recommended for children aged: 8+.
First published: Hardback September 2023.
This children’s book is ideal for: Budding scientists.

Evolution by Sarah Darwin and Eva-Maria Sadowski

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Our review:

Join us on an exhilarating journey from the origins of life to the present day!

Not many books cover such a vast timeline as Evolution. Like the earth itself, the book begins 4,600 million years ago and takes the reader not only right up to the present but also into the possible future of our fascinating planet.

The book describes itself as ‘an expedition through Earth’s history and the evolution of life’. Key life forms in each geological age are examined alongside the geology of our changing planet. Specific sections focus on fossils, climate change and how many species evolved in partnership with one another to create intricate habitats and biodiversity.

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The book is lavishly illustrated with detailed paintings that greatly enhance the text, reminiscent of the highly-visual Dorling Kindersley books. Evolution is a book that deserves to have time spent on it, to read deeply into the science that is clearly explained and marvel at the wonders of our world.

There is a wealth of information presented on each page and re-readings are likely to turn up new nuggets of interest. Complicated terms such as natural selection, variation and inheritance are explained in clear and concise language without the ‘dumbing down’ that other books may use to appease a young readership.

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Evolution is co-authored by Charles Darwin’s great-great granddaughter Dr Sarah Darwin, and fellow scientist Dr Eva-Maria Sadowski. Produced in partnership with the Natural History Museum, this is an extremely high-quality publication.

The topics of evolution and natural history are clearly complicated, and the book does not claim to provide comprehensive coverage of all aspects of this wide-ranging field of scientific study. A helpful glossary and detailed sources list at the back of the book will allow readers to extend their knowledge and perhaps start on the path to becoming scientists themselves one day.

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Our actions will determine the future of life on Earth. The better we understand evolution, the better we can protect our planet.

Mini biographies of key pioneers in the realm of natural science add a personal touch to the narrative. These range from the ‘headliners’ such as Charles Darwin (1809-1882) to the perhaps lesser-known Mary Anning (1799-1847) who discovered the first fossil of an ichthyosaur when she was just 12 years old. Bringing the tale right up to date, alongside David Attenborough and Greta Thunberg, German scientists Uğur Şahim and Özlem Türeci are also featured for their invention of one of the first COVID-19 vaccinations.

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Evolution is a high-quality, fascinating insight into our amazing natural world, perfect for both classroom and school library usage. It will appeal to confident readers with an interest in nature who are looking to be inspired by scientific pioneers to help create a better world for tomorrow.

Many thanks to What On Earth Books for the review copy.

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If you like Evolution by Sarah Darwin and Eva-Maria Sadowski you might also like: our reviews of 101 Awesome Women Who Transformed Science, Earth Shattering Events by Robin Jacobs and Sophie Williams and Dr Maggie’s Grand Tour of the Solar System by Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock.

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About Melanie Dillon

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Melanie has a Master’s degree in Information and Library Management; a Post Graduate Certificate in Children’s Literature focusing on the Reading Agency’s Reading Well scheme & LGBT YA fiction, and extensive experience working in school and public libraries. Linkedin | Reviews by Melanie Dillon