NATURE WAS FIRST by Walter C. Fabell


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While the theme of showing the natural sources of human ideas is a good one, its carrying out here rates a little argument. Many different things, from the sail sprouted by a cocoanut, the elephant's shower bath, the leafhopper's dunce cap, a monkey's bird plucking, to hive cooling by bees -- one or two to each simply worded, simply illustrated page -- are shown as ""...ideas (were) being used by different creatures -- and even plants -- long, long before Man thought of them."" This seems to raise such questions as: Are they ideas or natural happenings? Did Man always look at the animals and say ""Aha:""? Did the elephants think up the shower? Is Man a separate item from the rest of nature? Too, at the easy reading level, this may contain information meaningless to a six or seven year old, yet it is too simple a non fiction book for the older group. Basically a nice idea, it should perhaps have given homo sapiens a squarer deal -- put him in his place as a coworker rather than a plucker from nature's bed of instincts.

Publisher: McKay