The interdependence of animal and plant life and all the factors affecting both (including cataclysm and dumb luck) is usually reduced to the neat but essentially misleading term ""balance of nature,"" which Mr. Hirsch shows teetering through history and the present. This is an excellent introductory book condensing the history of ecological study and theory, and exploring the chain of cause and effect in the natural world. Through anecdote and numerous examples, the author provides a perspective and expands the initial concept in a well written book that teaches without tears, as his Globe for the Space Age did. Starting with biology courses, the book suggests itself as a supplemental text all over the course work map at this grade level. Ecology is a curriculum coordinator's beautiful dream of perfect correlation because it ties into just about everything else influencing concepts in agronomy, economics, demography, conservation, etc., etc.. The drawings of William Steinel are both decorative and slyly thought provoking--animals, birds and insects set against woodland or grassland backgrounds visually underlining the relationship of one to the other. The Suggestions for Further Reading is a short, selective, fully annotated list.