The Ancestor’s Tale Reviewed

The New York Times is running my review of Richard Dawkins’s new book The Ancestor’s Tale this weekend.

I’m particularly grateful at times like these to have a blog, where I can add extra information and the occasional correction.

Towards the start of the review I mention a remarkable tree of 3,000 species. You can download a pdf here. It’s files like these that the zoom function were made for.

Towards the end of the review, I say that jellyfish and humans share a common ancestor that lived perhaps a billion years ago. There’s plenty of debate about early animal evolution, but a billion years is probably too old–700 million or 800 million would have been better. Maybe I was thinking about fungi instead of jellyfish.

When I have a little more time today, I’ll blog about some of the things that I think Dawkins should have included in his book but didn’t.