Scibooks

After the quakes – hard lessons that help us all do better

Peter Griffin Dec 08, 2017

I was at the science communicator’s conference in Auckland on the afternoon of 22 February, 2011, when the massive earthquake struck Christchurch. The theme of the conference was “Listening to the other side” and we’d enjoyed several stimulating discussions during the day as non-scientists gave their views on ways to effectively communicate the science of complex issues. That abstract … Read More

Book review: Sea Change

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Nov 23, 2017

The latest in Bridget Williams Books mini publications of short books on big topics focuses on the social justice of climate change. I picked up Sea Change: Climate Politics and New Zealand on a Friday evening thinking I’d skim through the intro to get a taste of what University of Canterbury’s Dr Bronwyn Hayward had offered in her 90-page BWB … Read More

Book review – Science and the City

Guest Work Nov 22, 2017

Reviewed by Susan Rapley.  If you’re hunting for Christmas gifts for the scientific or technically inclined, Laurie Winkless’ first book Science and the City will be a must-have. Science and the City takes you on a journey (in various forms of transport) through the past, present, and future of metropolitan living.  Now New Zealand-based, Winkless has taken her own … Read More

Book review: Animal Eco-Warriors

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Jun 08, 2017

A new book from CSIRO about a range of animals helping their human companions to protect the environment will make a great gift for conservation-minded and animal-crazed kids. Animal Eco-Warriors: Humans and animals working together to protect our planet, written by Nic Gill, is a first-person account of some of Australia and New Zealand’s most active non-human conservationists. Read More

Book review: Antibiotic Resistance – the end of modern medicine?

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Apr 21, 2017

A new book summarising the risks of antibiotic resistance by prominent Kiwi scientist Dr Siouxsie Wiles is an excellent overview of the issue, and what you should be aware of.  Antibiotic Resistance: The End of Modern Medicine?, published by Bridget Williams Books, draws on Siouxsie’s expertise as a microbiologist to discuss the threat facing modern medicine if we lose … Read More

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Book review: Doctors in Denial

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Mar 11, 2017

One of the doctors who blew the whistle on National Women’s Hospital’s ‘unfortunate experiment’ has written about his experiences in an attempt to set the revisionist history straight. Ron Jones was a junior obstetrician and gynaecologist when he joined National Women’s Hospital in 1973, by which point Professor Herbert Green was well into his study that has since become … Read More

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Book review: The Conversation Yearbook 2016

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Jan 20, 2017

Toward the end of the year there can be a glut of ‘best of’ publications, but The Conversation Yearbook 2016 stands out as an enjoyable, wide-ranging collection of essays. The Conversation has been running in Australia since 2011, collating news and views from the academic and research community on hot topics of the day or longer-burning issues. My main … Read More

Book review: Falcon

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Dec 14, 2016

You may have already devoured H is for Hawk, but Helen Macdonald’s precursor is worth a visit (or revisit) for its marvellous story telling of the cultural and natural history of falcons. Better known for her acclaimed H is for Hawk, Helen Macdonald’s precursor book Falcon has been re-released on its tenth anniversary. I’ve yet to read H is for Hawk, … Read More

Book review: What’s so controversial about genetically modified food?

John Kerr Dec 11, 2016

John T Lang’s new book tackles a tough question: What’s so controversial about genetically modified food? The answer is: It’s complicated. While far from satisfying, this conclusion isn’t a cop out. The staggering complexity of our modern food systems is a returning theme in Lang’s small treatise on genetic modification (GM) and food. His observations and insights are … Read More

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Book review: Cowspiracy – The Sustainability Secret

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Nov 12, 2016

A documentary regurgitated into book format falls flat in Cowspiracy, which investigates the role of animal husbandry in global greenhouse gas emissions. With its gripping image of a cow in dark colours staring out at you – the documentary Cowspiracy has been sitting unwatched on my Netflix queue for some time now.  I’ve been hesitant because anything that implies a … Read More

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