Spirals in Time, the secret life and curious afterlife of seashells
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Who or what sculpts these intricate objects we find on beaches?
How are seashells made and, perhaps more importantly, why?
When Jason and the Argonauts searched for the Golden Fleece, were they in fact hunting for a cloak woven from the gleaming beards of seashells?
Do octopuses really steal seashells and sail around in them like little boats?
I answer all these questions and plenty more in my exploration of seashells and the animals that make them: the marvelous molluscs.
Spirals in Time reveals the stories of seashells that lead into fascinating realms of the natural world and cutting-edge science. These are the hidden wonders you can hold in the palm of your hand.
Shell makers are some of the oldest and most successful animals on the planet. They live extraordinary lives in strange places from the deepest ocean trenches to mountaintops and everywhere in between (the only thing molluscs haven’t done is learn how to fly).
And through the ages, people have used shells not only as pretty trinkets but these curious objects have played a key role in people’s lives. I show how seashells offer insight into the minds of our distant ancestors, they teach us about evolution and the curiosities of life on Earth and they are bellwethers of our impact on the environment, reminding us why nature matters to us all.
Spirals in Time is published by the good people at Bloomsbury.
There have been lots of reviews of Spirals in the press. Here’s a few of them.
Have a read of a feature in the Daily Telegraph Magazine about me and the book.
I read an abridged version for BBC Radio 4’s Book of the Week.
And have a listen to me chatting about molluscs on BBC Radio 4’s Start the Week.