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The Fearless Science of Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Birute Galdikas

Ottaviani, Jim

(Book - 2013)
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Baker & Taylor
An engrossing, graphically illustrated introduction to the lives and work of three eminent primatologists shares insights into their educations under mentor Louis Leakey while exploring their pivotal contributions to 20th-century natural science. By the #1 New York Times best-selling author of Feynman.

McMillan Palgrave

Jim Ottaviani returns with an action-packed account of the three greatest primatologists of the last century: Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Biruté Galdikas. These three ground-breaking researchers were all students of the great Louis Leakey, and each made profound contributions to primatology—and to our own understanding of ourselves.

Tackling Goodall, Fossey, and Galdikas in turn, and covering the highlights of their respective careers, Primates is an accessible, entertaining, and informative look at the field of primatology and at the lives of three of the most remarkable women scientists of the twentieth century. Thanks to the charming and inviting illustrations by Maris Wicks, this is a nonfiction graphic novel with broad appeal.

& Taylor

Introduces the lives and work of three eminent primatologists, shares insights into their educations under mentor Louis Leakey, while exploring their pivotal contributions to twentieth-century natural science.

Publisher: New York : First Second Books, 2013
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9781596438651
Branch Call Number: J GRAPHIC 599.8 O
Characteristics: 133 p. : chiefly col. ill. ; 23 cm.
Additional Contributors: Wicks, Maris


From Library Staff

Nonfiction biography about Louis Leakey's 'Angels'—the three women sent out to study chimps, gorillas, and orangutans, and whose research changed much of what we know of primate behavior. Also includes little known facts about life in the field—Leakey insisted that they all have their appendix re... Read More »

From the critics

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Oct 01, 2014
  • Cynthia_N rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

I really believe we need more nonfiction graphic novels. This was a quick read but I finished the book with a desire to know more about these women. Great for pulling in reluctant readers.

NYPL Staff Pick
Ottaviani's text and Wicks's art bring these pioneering women scientists to life.
- Selection Team

Apr 24, 2014
  • CraigGraziano rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Primates captures the fascinating study of several great ape species in the 1960's and 70's. Three women—Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Biruté Galdikas—found their calling and approached their research in very different ways.

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Dec 28, 2013
  • m2 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Quick but fascinating look at the lives of 3 amazing primate researchers all set up by Louis Leakey in their respective study locations: Jane Goodall (chimpanzees), Dian Fossey (moutain gorillas), and Birute Galdikas (orangutans). I have always loved hearing about larger primates -- this was however an introduction to graphics for me on a topic I consider essential reading -- Loved it!

MORE from Jim Ottaaviani and Maris Wicks would be great!

This tripartite biography vividly dramatizes the determination and sacrifice that are necessary to excel in science and make important discoveries. If you only have a passing acquaintance with these remarkable women, you will likely finish this book amazed and inspired. The scenes are well-chosen and nicely depicted. The sexism each faced is alluded to but prudently kept offstage (presumably for the sake of younger readers). The facts of Fossey's demise are also elided, however, which leaves an odd hole in the story. An author's afterward undermines the book's impact by cautioning that "some of what you read is fiction" without citing specific scenes.


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