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LAST OF THE WILD by Robert M. McClung


Vanished and Vanishing Giants of the Animal World

by Robert M. McClung & illustrated by Robert M. McClung & Bob Hines

Age Range: 12 & up

Pub Date: July 15th, 1997
ISBN: 0-208-02452-2

 McClung (Old Bet and the Start of the American Circus, 1993, etc.) offers a sweeping historical view of wildlife from the time of the emergence of the first humans to the present, with brief profiles of animals from all the continents and discussions of 62 large endangered animals. He concludes with a plea for wise stewardship of Earth. As with many attempts to compress coverage of billions of years into relatively few pages, there are some oversimplifications that lead to questionable statements. It's not certain, for example, that ``Cro-Magnon man worshipped the wild creatures that he depended on for food.'' The tone can be shrill, with repeated references to human arrogance and ``the cycle of human greed and illegal overkill,'' and the terminology (including the old-fashioned designation of ``primitive'' and ``advanced'' societies) and conclusions seem dated. A selected bibliography is provided, but quotes in the text appear without footnotes, making it difficult to determine the source of statements. (maps, index, not seen, b&w illustrations, bibliography) (Nonfiction. 12+)