The Soul of an Octopus by Sy Montgomery (★★★☆☆)
This was the only book I finished in December. It was a drawn-out read. I learned some amazing things about octopuses that I didn’t know (they have a beak, the are red when excited and white when calm, they only lay eggs once – at the end of their lives – and only two, out of million eggs survive in the wild), but besides these fascinating biological facts, the book dragged.
I am not sure what I expected. I did expect to learn more about octopuses (which I did). The author does a great job convincing me of octopuses’ beauty, intelligence and individual personalities, but 80% of the book were about the author and her assumed entitlement of having the privilege to spend time and get to know octopuses, having her arms touched by octopuses, contemplating getting one of her own, and taking SCUBA lessons because of a desire to experience octopuses in the wild, all the while making no critical comment about the fact that octopuses are caught and kept to be studied, touched, and looked at. She’s so excited about engaging with these animals that she sees no conflict with their captivity.
I guess I was expecting more of a psychological exploration than a day-to-day account of the authors interactions with (multiple, because one after the other died along the way) octopuses.
What did you read in December? Anything you’d like to recommend? Leave a comment, and then add me on Goodreads to keep in touch.