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Your Inner Fish    by Neil Shubin order for
Your Inner Fish
by Neil Shubin
Order:  USA  Can
Pantheon, 2008 (2008)
Hardcover, Softcover, e-Book

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* * *   Reviewed by Alex Telander

Neil Shubin is a professor and associate dean at the University of Chicago. A paleontologist, Shubin made headlines around the world in April 2006 when he discovered the missing link in the world of fish with Tiktaalik, a fish with many features like that of tetrapods or four-legged animals. When asked to teach a human anatomy course, Shubin discovered that a lot of the structures and evolutionary processes of the human body could be better explained through the evolution of fish anatomy. Thus was born Your Inner Fish: A Journey into the 3.5-Billion-Year History of the Human Body.

Shubin breaks everything down into its fundamental parts, with specific chapters on genes, teeth, scents, ears, and sight. He covers the evolutionary history of the important organs of the body, tracing their development over millions of years through fish and other animals. It is a fascinating study into how the evolutionary marvel of the incredibly complex human body came to be; how organs, tissues, and vessels changed and improved through a process of natural selection to become the most beneficial to the species. The result is a never-stopping, fast-running factory house with over a million continuous processes, that is taken for granted by most of the world's population.

Shubin writes in a simple and easy style that makes his subject accessible to any reader, no matter their scientific background. Filled with pictures and tables and graphs illustrating the facts, Your Inner Fish provides an interesting window into our evolutionary history as seen through the developing bodies of the animal kingdom.

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