Saturday, 13 November 2010

Yet more book reviews, I wonder what Greg Paul has been up to over the last few years?

It could only be his recently published Feild Guide to Dinosaurs. This is brilliant; finally Gregory S Paul has done a referance guide on Dinosaurs. The first half consists of info on dinosaur biology, the second is a comprehensive and classificatinally organized series of breif fact files on almost every known dinosaur species. Many of which are accompanied by a skeletal reconstruction and an accompanying profile style life reconstruction.

Above; an example of one of the pencil drawings that accompany the dinosaur fact files (Eoraptor)

Through out the book are nice paintings and pencil drawings of the animals in question, many of which will be familiar to you I'm sure. He covers recently described species such as Austroraptor and Tethyshadros.

One key habit of Greg Paul is to lump species often placed in different genus catergories in to the same genus (Tyrannosaurus bataar and Tyrannosaurus rex for example). Personally I have no gripe with this as he does not describe the animals genus by genus as most dino reference guides do, but species by species therefore still creating a distinction. He also puts the more generally accepted genus name in brackets to prevent confusion. One very interesting feature of the book is the placement of Guanlong wucaii in the genus Monolophosaurus. The justification for this may be questionable, but to be honest with you it does not bother me in the slightest.

The fact files are rather brief, but cover all the necessary data (except the date of description and who by). The main reading is in the front of the book where he goes through all the introductory stuff in great detail.
So; to sum it all up. Great drawings, great detail and lots of dinosaurs. Definately worth a read.

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