Sunday book review – Biography of a Fly by Jaap Robben and Paul Faassen

This small book is great fun. All human life, I mean dipteran life, is here; birth, sex, death, shit and a buzzard. It’s quirky but also very informative. It will make you laugh but it will also make you think. It’s a fly’s life – all 23 days of it.

The words by Jaap Robben are very good but so are the illustrations by Paul Faassen. I can’t know how faithful to the original Dutch words is David Doherty’s translation but the result works very well in any case.

The cover? Gives a good impression of the book. I’ll give it 8/10.

Biography of a Fly by Jaap Robben and Paul Faassen is published by World Editions.

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2 Replies to “Sunday book review – Biography of a Fly by Jaap Robben and Paul Faassen”

  1. Flies are either disregarded by many people or, at best, reviled as dirty, irritating biters that spread disease but they very much deserve our attention and interest. One of the big four insect orders, they are amazingly diverse and successful. Some, of course, are important vectors of disease (which alone justifies our close interest) but they are also key components of many ecosystems, playing a role as nutrient recyclers, pollinators, herbivores, predators/parasitoids and prey to other predators – invertebrate and vertebrate. New books on flies are always welcome!

    1. Dipterans are ‘true flies’ (it’s the halteres that make them ‘true flies’). There are non-dipterans that people call flies.

      The fly on the cover of the book may be wondering why it is being confused with a fly which isn’t true?

      Dipterans (and especially their larvae) are indicators in forensic science.

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