A Guide to the Human Body

Learn about the complexity of the human body.

Secrets of the human body

Tulleken, Chris van. by Chris Van Tulleken, Xand Van Tulleken, and Andrew Cohen Firefly Books, 2017
251p index, 9780228100324 $29.95

The first and most striking characteristic of Secrets of the Human Body is the abundance, diversity, and vividness of the illustrations. Indeed, of the 251 pages, only 89 of them are not illustrated with some photo, graph, or drawing. If a picture is in fact worth a thousand words, the book would potentially be hundreds of pages longer without them. The authors present a thoughtfully concise exploration of the wonders of the human body, dividing their text into the subsections “Secrets” (an introduction), “Grow,” “Learn,” “Survive,” and “Future.” The introductory section explores the complexity of the human body, including the number and variation of microbes it contains. “Grow” compares rates of growth for human and nonhuman species and examines brain development; “Learn” considers language, memory, movement, and association. “Survive” describes human anatomical and physiological adaptations to the environment, and “Future” proposes where we go from here. The tone of the writing is engaging and conversational—two of the authors are twin brothers—and will interest a wide range of readers; this is an enjoyable, accessible addition to any collection.

Summing Up: Recommended. All readers.
Reviewer: L. A. Meserve, emeritus, Bowling Green State University
Subject: Science & Technology – Health Sciences
Choice Issue: Jun 2018