Inside Animal Hearts and Minds

Bears That Count, Goats That Surf, and Other True Stories of Animal Intelligence and Emotion

Narrated by Hayden Panettiere
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Pub Date 15 Dec 2021 | Archive Date 5 Mar 2022

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In a world where a growing body of scientific research is closing the gap between the human and non-human, Inside Animal Hearts and Minds invites us to change the way we view animals, the world, and our place in it.

As Charles Darwin suggested more than a century ago, the differences between animals and humans are “of degree and not of kind.” Not long ago, ethologists denied that animals had emotions or true intelligence. Now, we know that rats laugh when tickled, magpies mourn as they cover the departed with greenery, female whales travel thousands of miles for annual reunions with their gal pals, seals navigate by the stars, bears hum when happy, and crows slide down snowy rooftops for fun.

In engaging text, photographs, and infographics, Inside Animal Hearts and Minds showcases fascinating and heart-warming examples of animal emotion and cognition that will foster wonder and empathy. Learn about an orangutan who does “macramé,” monkeys that understand the concept of money, and rats that choose friendship over food. Even language, math, and logic are no longer exclusive to humans. Prairie dogs have their own complex vocabularies to describe human intruders, parrots name their chicks, sea lions appear capable of deductive thinking akin to a ten-year-old child’s, and bears, lemurs, parrots, and other animals demonstrate numerical cognition.

In a world where a growing body of scientific research is closing the gap between the human and non-human, Inside Animal Hearts and Minds invites us to change the way we view animals, the world, and...

Advance Praise

"I love this book! Belinda gives us fascinating, well researched and truly hilarious stories about the animals we have the privilege to share the planet with. If you have animals or are just an animal lover, add this book to your collection immediately. I also liked how the book was laid out. Whether you have 5 minutes or an hour, you can pick it up, laugh and learn. Well done Belinda, big fan!

A remarkable achievement. Not only does this book deliver on its title, but it is written in a manner that conveys the author's true passion for the subject. A beautiful example of solid research delivered with tenderness, respect and humor. You will never look upon our feathered, furry or slippery friends that same way again.

I enjoyed every moment of this wonderful book. There is so much one can learn here about the world of animals. This book guarantees that once read you will never look at animals the same way again.

I definitely recommend this book to all.

I cannot use enough words to recommend this book! It is a trove of findings that will keep your mind soaring. Your natural love of animals will increase ten fold as you see them and recall the amazing information you have gleaned. I especially liked the references provided so we can validate subjects discussed. While I spent a lot of time between the Net and the book, every moment from the introduction to the end, was time well spent."

"I love this book! Belinda gives us fascinating, well researched and truly hilarious stories about the animals we have the privilege to share the planet with. If you have animals or are just an...

Available Editions

EDITION Audiobook, Abridged
ISBN 9781772562149
PRICE US$14.95 (USD)
DURATION 4 Hours, 40 Minutes

Available on NetGalley

NetGalley Shelf App (AUDIO)

Average rating from 53 members

Featured Reviews

As a huge animal lover I found this audiobook moving, entertaining, astounding and humbling.

We as humans, need to take more notice of animals. This audio shows that.
Great research for lots of great facts.

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Thank you to NetGalley and BooksGoSocial Audio for an audiobook copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This book was a touching summary about animal behaviors. I really enjoyed listening to this collection of animal stories. This book includes stories of animals showing emotion, kindness, intelligence and love. It is a must read for animal lovers.
My favorite thing about this audiobook is that the author Belinda Recio seems to have done all of the hard work in bringing all of these stories and scientific reports together in one pint size package.

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This was an interesting read. The stories shared about various animals or species and the manner in which they show intelligence, demonstrate their playful natures, and perform acts of heroism is amazing. The description of the research done, which shows the abilities of animals, is explained in layman’s terms so it is easy to comprehend. A good book to read if you are interested in animals and biology.

Thank you to NetGalley and Skyhorse Publishing for my advanced review copy. All opinions and thoughts are my own.

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A remarkable collection of facts about animals. I learned so much, it's crazy! I was amazed to learn the coolest stuff about prairie dogs, crows, parrots, octopi, parrots... Oh, the list goes on! It's a "happy read" for me.

Note for Christian readers: Evolution is mentioned a few times.

Audiobook listeners: Hayden Panettiere does an excellent job narrating. Would listen to more from her.

Recommended for: Adults & Teens
Suitable for: Ages 12 and up

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This book was incredibly interesting and made me see animals in a completely different light. As humans we perceive animals as a lesser kind. Incapable of showing signs of “humanity” this book evidences that this concept is wrong. Animals are intelligent, initiative and very human-like.

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This was a fascinating book. If you think you know animals this will still surprise you! A book like this can not be long enough. I listened to the audio. Thank you to the Author and Publisher for this Advanced Readers Copy through NetGalley.

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This was a fantastic and informative audio book. Packed full of interesting stories and facts about Animals, from gorillas who can sign to dolphins who mimic, this audio book was a glimpse into the intelligence of mammals.
As it was non fiction, there were also dates and studies listed so that if you wanted to do some further reading you could.
The Narrator was lively and engaging, brining a warmth and humour to the book.
Would recommend to any animal lover or perhaps a teen interested in animal studies.

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I loved this audiobook so much! It was not only extremely interesting but you could tell there was a lot of research that was involved. What really did it for me was that Hayden was the narrator. They couldn’t have picked a better narrator. Especially because of how she feels about animals. I definitely appreciate animals more after reading this book.

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This was such a fascinating book to listen too. I have always felt a strange affinity with animals and had the upmost respect for them and so this was a trasure to listen too. It was funny and was really well researched so I felt that I was learning so much at the same time. I would love to get a physical copy of this book and read it over and over. A wonderfully insightful and fascinating book.

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I wanted something positive and inspiration to listen to in March 2022. This audiobook certainly fulfilled that need - plus gave hope for the future.

There are always going to be those who believe that we anthropomorphize (give human characteristics) to animals instead of giving any credence to proof of animal feelings or logical thought. Well, this book provides insightful & compelling researched-based evidence to the contrary. Lots and lots of stories about research that, at least to me, demonstrates there is so much more to the animal kingdom then mankind wants to admit.

It's fascinating to learn more about why humans maybe more animal then animals are human. Gives Darwinism a really good spin. If you don't believe in Darwinism and feel anthropomorphism is really what's going on, you should really read this book. If for nothing else to lexamine the research told in it.

I am completely in awe of how researchers come up with these studies. It's intriguing to hear what they come up with and what they learn from these studies. As someone who has had to conduct her own research, it just blows my mind!

The examples of animal behavior take on a wide range from altruism to understanding death. This is another book that makes me firmly believe mankind needs to step up how we behave towards the other creatures on our spaceship Earth.

I didn't think the narrator added anything to the book but she certainly didn't take anything away. I would honestly recommend the book because it's easier to look up the information being referred to online if you are curious about a particular animal or story. I believe I heard a reference to pictures are well. However, it's a good book for commutes since each story isn't very long.

I received an ARC audiobook from Netgalley to help me prepare my honest review.

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I really liked this book because it is fun, interesting, and light. With the world embroiled in the war in Ukraine, this book was exactly what I needed to forget, at least for a little while, that the world can be a cruel place.

This book is uplifting and fascinating. It is a great insight into our animal cousins, who are more intelligent and emotional than we often give them credit for. If you are an animal lover, then this book is definitely for you. If you aren’t an animal lover (yet), then this book is essential for you–hopefully it can change your mind!

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This is an interesting account of all things animals. Perfect to listen to with my animal loving daughter.

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Interesting and fun stories. Nice way to spend some time. Thanks to Netgalley for the opportunity to listen to this audiobook

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This was a very interesting audiobook and I really enjoyed it. My only fault is that I wish it was longer.

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Delightful! I mean that in every sense of the word. If you're one of those people who can't resist those "unlikely animal friends" videos but also like science, you'll love "Inside Animal Hearts and Minds."

From giggling rats to crows who bring presents to people, you won't be surprised by some of these stories, but others are really enlightening. Dolphins that get high, spiders that play, monkeys that throw a fit when their friends are undercompensated, parrots with a dark sense of humor, chimps that play with baby dolls, eavesdropping owls that can understand prairie dog language - it's all there.

If you prefer to read academic texts, you'll probably be bored by these short summaries. But if you're just looking for a dose of dopamine and a heartstring-tugging collection of research findings told by a great narrator, this soul balm is for you.

It's not saccharine -- it's just science that will make you smile.

Thanks to NetGalley, the author, and the publisher for providing a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

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A light read, briefly covering the different stories and research around animals and their emotions and intelligence.

Each story is briefly covered. Any research used is explained by mentioning the researchers names and telling a brief version of what they found as if its another story.

All in all, it's the perfect book for animal lovers who are new to factual evidence of these ideas. I like to read a lot on the subject, usually directly from the scientific papers, so the ideas in the book wasn't anything I hadn't heard before. But to listen to it as an audiobook whilst tidying it was a lovely light listen! 😊

[Audiobook provided for free by Net Gallery in return for an honest review]

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This is a fascinating book on animals and they way they think, act, and behave. Some people think that animals don't have emotions or can't think like humans do. This book proves that false. Full of stories that will make you smile, this is a treasure trove of stories to make you reconsider your thinking about animals. I absolutely LOVED this book!

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I thought this was such a good book. I laughed a lot and teared up a bit. I love learning about the ways animals are "tested" and the outcomes. Loved the narrator.

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This is such a great book! So many interesting insights on animals' amazing brains and ways of thinking. From sense of humour to empathy, the book finally debunks the myth that animals don't have the same scope of feelings and personalities that humans do. I really appreciated the point the author makes about human bias and the 'intelligence tests' created with human standards in mind. Animals are fellow beings, as much as humans are animals. All animals deserve the same level of respect.

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The tagline" Bears That Count, Goats That Surf, and Other True Stories of Animal Intelligence and Emotion" says it all - the book is full of interesting and often humorous episodes animals showing evidence of intelligence and emotional range, which are obvious to animal lovers in us all. I enjoyed this book immensely. The audiobook narrator has a soothing and compassionate voice, and it was fun to uncover many episodes described here. I would recommend this book to other nature and animal lovers!

A copy of audiobook edition was provided in exchange of honest opinion and review, thank you NetGalley and BooksGoSocial Audio for letting us encounter with this fun new book!

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If you are an animal lover, like me, this is a must-read! I was smiling throughout the whole book learning about things animals do that may surprise you! So much fun to read and there are several animals that I will look differently at going forward.

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A fascinating account of social behaviors both within and cross species from several different species of animals. Clearly narrated and eloquently written. A great listen for anyone upper elementary and above. Easy to understand for the layman. A heart-warming listen for anyone needing a dose of positivity with their learning.

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I love books that confirm that animals are smart and have feelings just like us. And this audiobook describe acts that animals aren't suppose to do, but low and behold they do. Its unfortunate that people based intelligence, on other being using our communication as justice to say whose intelligence. Considering a lot of different animals understand what we want and yet we don't have a clue what animals are communicating to us makes me wonder how intelligent we are.
For anyone who loves a good story about what animals can do these stories will make you smile and brighten you day. The narrator is excellent and will help you decompress from a busy day.
Also, there is a companion audiobook, "When Animals Rescue," from the same author that you will love too.

I want to thank BooksGoSocial Audio and NetGalley for this informative book

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Are we the only intelligible life in the universe? We are not…

In her book, Inside Animal Hearts and Minds, Belinda Recio explores the incredible scientific findings of animal intelligence. From dung beetles who take a photograph of the sky to navigate to breaking the code of prairie dogs sounds, this incredible book defies what we thought we knew about animals and opens the door to a new understanding that shifts how we look at God’s fabulous creatures. Of course, written from an evolutionary standpoint, I disagreed with the number of years or the belief that we evolved from apes; however, putting that aside, Belinda Recio fabulously revealed the secrets of the animal kingdom that humans are currently studying and beginning to understand. While we have seen animals do amazing things, they don’t begin to cover the truth of animal intelligence. If you love biology and learning unique facts about your favorite critters, Inside Animal Hearts and Minds is the book for you!

*Thank you, NetGalley and the publisher, for providing this pre-release copy. All thoughts and opinions are entirely my own!*

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This was such an enjoyable audiobook! Five stars for the book itself and also for the narrator. Hayden Panettiere did an excellent job!

The beginning of this book begs the reader to not only consider animal intelligence but to focus on animal EMOTION and feeling. I've always been an animal lover and, while the title and cover drew me in, I was unsure of whether or not I would enjoy this content in audio format ... but I really did.

I loved hearing the examples of how animals show friendship, love, mourning. It was so interesting to hear that some have color preferences and other quirks that have likely helped them to survive as a species for various reasons.

This was a fun one that I binged while deep cleaning my house and I forgot I was even cleaning, if that tells you anything! :)

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This book was a delight to read. Full of research and stories, it captured the heart of the animal world and awakened a sympathy and empathy for those animals in captivity who are mistreated and abused. We have much to learn about the animal world, and this books gives us a good start.

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Inside Animal Hearts and Minds, by Belinda Recio, is a bit like going on a magical mystery tour with science and some very fascinating animals. This is definitely not my usual genre in literature but I really enjoyed it. So much so that I had a very hard time putting it down, at night. Maybe constantly stopping to go watch the recommended and fascinating videos had something to do with it keeping me up so late? I received the audiobook version and Hayden Panettiere did an excellent job keeping me engaged and interested. I never realized what a sweet, engaging voice she has until I listened to this book.
Warning: Animal Hearts and Minds might cause one to change how they see animals and their impact on the world around us. I already knew that animals are intelligent and have all the feelings but now scientists are proving it to both themselves, as well as the wider world. This wonderful book is full of examples such as: magpies mourn as they cover the departed with greenery, female whales travel thousands of miles for annual reunions with their gal pals, seals navigate by the stars, bears hum when happy, and many, many more.

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This advance audiobook was sent to me in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to #NetGalley, publishers, author. #Belinda Recio and #InsideAnimalHeartsandMinds for allowing me to early review. To anyone who ever told me Animals don’t have feelings, Wrong. I always have felt like my dogs have understood and had empathy when I was sad. This book proves they scientifically do. Lots. of animals have empathy for other animals. This was perfectly narrated so as to not bore the reader with facts. Could have been read in a monotone voice which would have bored the listener. This however, was very interesting I would say this is a book for an upperclassman for special interest or to be able to follow up their references.. Excellent. Probably beyond the reach of most lower level students. certainly, the book is a plethor of scientific information and references to additional idocumntation and journal articles.

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Wow this was a brilliant I loved every second of it.  It was so interesting and fascinating. I listened to the audiobook and loved the narrator voice. She brought so much life and atmosphere to the book it is definitely worth getting the audiobook if you can.  It was so full of interesting and fascinating stories from elephants painting, cheeky dolphin hiding rubbish and only taking a tiny piece at a time for food. I loved all the animals who learnt to mimic there Keepers. Its a really stunning book that is obviously very well researched with such a wide variety of animals and things they have learnt.  Its written style was so much fun and it flowed beautifully.  It is totally a page turner as I had to finish it in one sitting as it made me feel so happy and lighthearted and had me chucking in places. I can't recommend this audiobook/book enough its definitely a must read book that I'm positive you will enjoy. I just can't wait to read more from this author.  She is definitely one to watch out for.
The highest praise goes out to the author and publishers for creating this extremely interesting epic read for that feel good factor. 
The above review has already been placed on goodreads, Google books, Barnes&noble, amazon UK and my blog
Under either of these names ladyreading365 or lady Reading365

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#insideAnimalHeartsandMinds by @belinda.recio was made available on audio by @booksgosocialgroup
published by @simonandschuster so many thanks for the review audio.
The more I ponder on just my own experiences with animals and pets, the more I am convinced of their intelligence and emotionality. There's something developing in my heart and mind, akin to a truth that im burying for my own convenience and gluttony -- that maybe it's not a kind thing to be eating other animals. Then again, many animals in the wild eat other animals however, they dont encapture them and force them to produce for them....or do they??? hmmm did you know that certain ants will hold captive another insect by intoxicating it and then milking its sweet nectar like substance that they enjoy?? crazy but true. Did you know that ants, as small as they are, have been farming for millenia before we humans ever tried? Did you know that elephants have excellent memory and can recognize a fellow elephant friend even after many years apart? Did you know that primates, elephants & crows do death rituals, burying and mourning of their loved ones? There is so much information in the book, read excellently by @haydenpanettiere ! Check this out for a new perspective on the animal kingdom!!
#animals #animalintelligence
#animalstudies #themindsofanimals #animalsfeel

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Inside animal hearts and minds by Belinda Recio

I really enjoyed this one Such an amazing an informative listen, Cute stories for all ages would definitely recommend as a family read.
⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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This audiobook was very well done. I appreciate that there were a wide range of animals talked about, and not just the very typical animals what we already know are very intelligent. I felt that the narrator was a good fit for this book.

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Thank you NetGalley for a free copy in exchange for an honest review. This was very interesting and most of the stories about animal intelligence were super cute. I caught myself going "aww" a lot while listening to this. If you want to read something that's uplifting and fascinating, you should definitely pick this up.

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This book is full of stories about animals and their different abilities. Stories show animals laughing,, counting, demonstrating compassion, using their imaginations, creating art, and many more amazing things. Narrated by Hayden Panetier, the book teaches fascinating details about many different species. I would recommend this book for anyone who loves animals. A great read!

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I thoroughly enjoyed listening to the audiobook version of this. The book gives the reader a much better understanding of animal intelligence, emotions, how they think and feel.

To think that humans are the most or only intelligent species on earth is naive thinking. This book shares many examples of how different species from ants to apes are intelligent and have many things in common with us humans.

The book explains scientific experiments that have been conducted on the animals (humanely) in a very easy to understand way.
This is a must read if you are an animal lover or interested in biology/ other species.

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I really enjoyed this audiobook. It made me cry at tines of how the animals are with each other and humans. Especially when Koko was mention as I remeber about the gorilla and all the stuff what went around with her.

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Really fascinating book! The narrator did a great job. I found the book kept me interested with so many examples of animal emotion and intelligence. It was very high level and not as in depth as I personally would have liked. However, I think the book was better suited for high level information and is more of a book with fun facts that are to be read bit by bit over time vs. in one go.

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This book is an excellent introduction for anyone that is interested in animals. It showcases relevant and fun stories intertwined with facts that make the reader understand animal behavior in a different way. It's a good starting off point for anyone who want to learn about animal behavior and conservation.

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This book was a great read with tons of stories and anecdotes about animal intelligence. I’ve been a vegetarian for almost 20 years and it’s hard that so many people choose to ignore animal intelligence because it’s uncomfortable for them. It is so obvious if you look around. This book is full of funny and touching stories that show animals think and feel and have personalities. I found myself looking up the stories so that I could see them with my own eyes. This was a fast listen and I enjoyed it.

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For anyone who has ever doubted the emotional intelligence of animals, this book is for you.

The book is jam packed with examples of many different species of animals and real examples of their intelligence.

From smart crows to grieving elephants, the book proves there is still so much more to uncover about relationships in the animal kingdom.

This book is well written and fast paced with so many stories.

Highly recommend for adults and kids.

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Format: audiobook
Author: Belinda Recio ~ Title: Inside Animal Hearts and Minds ~ Narrator: Hayden Panettiere
Content: 5 stars ~ Narration: 4 stars

This audiobook was such a delight to listen to. If you like animals, as I do, you will love this. Did you ever consider that animals laugh, bring gifts, play, can do a prank? This book contains an excellent collection of true stories about amazing things animals can do and we never thought about it. And not just domestic animals like cats and dogs. But also elephants, rats, crows, and others.

A good narration by Hayden Panettiere, star of Hero series.

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This was a pleasant surprise for me. I would have never picked this one up but a friend referred it to me and I’m glad she did. I learn some amazing facts about primates, dolphins, whales, seals and even ants. The narration was great kept me interested. Definitely a fun listen on a road trip with the kids. Thank you NetGalley for this audio.

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This book was so much fun!
I binge read (well, listened to the audiobook) all in one day! Though I took breaks, my mind kept thinking back to this book and I had to come back to it so I could finish it.

As a child I always adored animals and any facts and research applying to them. This book reignited that love in me. I saw this as a “ready to read” book on NetGalley and thought, hey! I used to love books like that, so I gave it a try. I also don’t tend to read much nonfiction so I took the opportunity to broaden my horizons and give myself more education on topics that interest me.

Who knew animals knew so much? I’ve always been one to think all animals have thoughts, consciences, feelings, hopes, dreams, and self awareness, but seeing the actual facts and proof of it, and in funny ways, is amazing, laughable, and reassuring.

Only reason I am giving it less than five stars is because there were a few chapters I found my mind wandering. And while I believe that we evolve, I used this book to strengthen my amazement at God’s wonderful and mighty ability to create such spectacularly detailed things rather than believe alone in evolution as the book might portray (I do not know for a fact it does, I just know talk of evolution grew heavy at times).

I recommend this read to anyone who loves animals, has a soft spot for funny stories, or wants a non fiction read. The narrator is also great for the audiobook!

My overall rating:

🌟🌟🌟🌟/5 Stars

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Belinda gives us fascinating, well researched and truly hilarious stories about the animals we have the privilege to share the planet with. Really really enjoyed listening to this audiobook and recommend it!

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Narrator 5 stars

Story 5 stars
This was just as good as the Animals saving book though this one is more scientific/study based.

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Animal emotion. It’s such a complex and complicated subject, trying to strike the fine balance between observation, experiment and not imposing our own human emotions onto what we see. Anthropomorphism is so easy to do, thinking that an animal looks sad or happy, but are they? And do they experience similar emotions to us?

It was so eye opening in some of the stories found by researchers and those who have observed this in the natural world. Like apes displaying imagination and play. Some of the stories were so heartwarming (examples of friendships interspecies and with humans) and even examples of humour and sarcasm in animals too!

Into the mind of the famous Coco the gorilla was insanely interesting and still blows me away. Even examples of lies and such deep individual personality it was amazing. I loved learning about animal communication and it was mind blowing.

From birds, to dolphins, apes, goats and elephants to name a few, there were many examples of just how amazing animals are, unravelling a whole new layer to the animal kingdom.

It also included self awareness in insects and tests to measure animal intelligence, emotion, communication, awareness and perspective to even prairie dogs displaying grammar! The whole book was one big mind blowing read (or listen in my case. The audiobook was brilliant and fantastically narrated) and I thoroughly and completely recommend if you love animals, want a deeper understanding of them or are simply curious about this subject as a whole.

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