FICTION

“The Last Wolf & Herman,” by Laslo Krasznahorkai

“The Last Wolf” by Laslo Krasznahorkai is an astonishing and artistic display of writing. It is a single unbroken sentence, covering seventy pages, that still manages to stay grammatically correct. This lengthy sentence is from a man, having been mistaking for someone else, who must tell the true story of the last wolf in the Extremadura region of Spain. One would think a story told in one sentence would feel tiresome or rambling, yet Krasznahorkai’s narrator winds an engaging narrative that brings the reader along the writer’s emotional journey and leaves the reader with a feeling of completeness to the tale.

“Herman” is a pair of stories, “The Game Warden” and “The Death of Craft,” two stories so entirely different, it is hard to believe they are written by the same author. “The Game Warden” and “The Death of Craft” relays the same events from wildly different perspectives, and with different endings.

With Krasznahorkai’s incomparable master of writing in “The Last Wolf & Herman,” it is no wonder that he has received international awards for his creations.

NONFICTION

“Not So Different: Finding Human Nature in Animals,” by Nathan H. Lents

Professor of Molecular Biology and Director of the Biology and Cell & Molecular Biology programs at John Jay College of the City University of New York, author Nathan H. Lents delivers a comprehensive look into the similarities between humans and nonhumans and the multifaceted correlation between the brain and the body. Professor Lents uses examples from the scientific studies and personal observations, then goes further to explore how these behaviors relate to evolution.

This is not a book focusing on animal behavior. It is about human behavior and the way we can use observations of animal behavior and the emotions exhibited by animals to obtain a better understanding of the complex nature of human behavior. In the book, Lents outlines a series of phenomenon that occur in animal behavior that mirror human behavior through exploring evidence in several fields, including psychology, evolutionary biology, cognitive science, anthropology, and ethology.

“Not So Different” is very accessible and interesting read, emphasizing the fact that the emotional motivations and instinct of humans and nonhuman is extraordinarily alike.

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

“Circle,” by Jeannie Baker

Each year, bar-tailed godwits undertake the longest unbroken migration of any bird, flying from their breeding grounds in the Arctic to Australia and New Zealand and back again. They follow invisible pathways, pathways that have been followed for thousands of years, while braving hunger and treacherous conditions to reach their destination. With entrancing collages and lyrical narration, Jeannie Baker follows the godwit’s incredible flight, taking us over awe-inspiring scenes as the birds spread their wings above such beautiful landmarks as the Great Barrier Reef and China’s breathtaking cityscapes.

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