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Publisher's Summary

Random House presents the audiobook edition of The Unexpected Truth About Animals, written and read by Lucy Cooke.

History is full of strange animal stories, invented by the brightest and most influential, from Aristotle to Disney, and they reveal as much about us and the things we believe as they do about the animals they misrepresent. We once thought that eels were born from sand, that swallows hibernated underwater, and that bears gave birth to formless lumps that were licked into shape by their mothers.

Zoologist Lucy Cooke unravels many such myths, revealing the facts she's uncovered while sniffing out vultures, snooping on sloths and stalking drunk moose.

The Unexpected Truth About Animals is in equal parts astonishing, illuminating and laugh-out-loud funny. Starring: feminist hyenas; perverted penguins, exploding bats and frogs in taffeta trousers....

©2017 Lucy Cooke (P)2017 Random House Audiobooks

Critic Reviews

"Eye-opening, informative and very funny!" (Chris Packham)

What listeners say about The Unexpected Truth About Animals

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-20-18

Who are we to judge?

A witty collection of human failures in our attempts to understand animals. I think this book says much about man trying to see see all life through our limited perceptions.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-31-18

Exceptional

By far the best audio book I've had the pleasure to listen to yet.

Lucy Cooke's passion about the animals she discusses is clear but that doesn't steer her away from a light hearted theme, which runs through her writing and results in regular laugh out loud moments.

Despite watching and reading many animal and nature documentaries I found a wealth of intriguing facts and knowledge.

My greatest disappointment after finishing this book was not being able to find another by the author.

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  • J Monk
  • 01-28-21

So disappointed

I was really looking forward to this book being a big fan of animals with regard for the author too. However, the narration style is irritating with constant inflections and character voices more suited to Jackanory, I listen while I paint and I might as well listened to someone scratching their fingernails on a blackboard! Lucy’s enthusiasm is over the top and the rise in her voice, even shouting sometimes, constantly emphasising her point is very wearing. Not good, probably a decent book spoiled; I could stand no more after chapter 2.

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  • Liam Jorge Hermeaus Echevarria
  • 07-30-20

Loved it!

I'm studying Zoology at University and this has taught me so much! A big thank you to the author for this wonderful book!

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  • labrador man
  • 02-06-20

A great read

Loved this book and there is a cautionary tale for all zoologists and non zoologists alike. Parts make you chuckle and parts make you sad.

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  • Rachael B.
  • 08-27-19

shame the narration distracts from the menagerie

Some interesting facts and stories in here but i struggled to get past the overacting narration, which sounds like it's aimed at children, whereas the writing and stories are interesting and well written enough to reach a wide age range if they were read better.

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  • Danielle
  • 05-27-19

Super Interesting

My first time finishing reading a non fiction book and I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was to follow.

It kept me interested, entertained, wasn't too complicated (I have a Zoology degree but I'm pretty sure anyone could follow it as she explains any scientific terms used).

Gave me loads of really interesting facts and information to tell my friends about, they have been super impressed.

Her writing style is very witty and enjoyable to read, her narration is also very entertaining.

Loved it, probably one of my favourite books I've read or listened to. I'm very excited to see if she writes any more books like this.

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  • LMcA
  • 05-25-22

Enjoyable

Very interesting and enjoyable but I found the author's narration a bit OTT at times. Whilst I understand it's important to use intonation in reading, sometimes this was a bit overdone. But the content was very interesting and worth the listen.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-17-22

Brilliant and eye opening!

An absolute must for anyone interested in animal behaviour! Absorbing, fascinating eye opening and full of humour and joy

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-23-21

Fantastic stories, beautifully told

This book was enlightening and hilarious. It also had the benefit of being marvellously written. Lucy Cooke has a wonderfully poetic turn of phrase, and she uses it to turn an unjudgemental eye to the animal kingdom, revealing the many misguided misconceptions we have harboured (and sometimes still do) about our fellow creatures.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-10-18

Great book but dreadful narration

Let me start by saying that I love the contents of this book and am going to buy it for my Kindle. I can't listen to it. I tried, and listened to 6 out of 15 chapters but the narration is horrible. At times it's fine but then the narrator starts emphasising every second word and gets very high pitched. I was constantly adjusting the volume but have given up.