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Editorial Reviews

Now, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the book’s first publication, David Attenborough has revisited Life on Earth, completely updating and adding to the original text, taking account of modern scientific discoveries from around the globe. This special anniversary edition provides a fitting tribute to an enduring wildlife classic, destined to enthral the generation who saw it when first published and bring it alive for a whole new generation. 

Publisher's Summary

The nation’s greatest voice, David Attenborough, reads a brand-new edition of Life on Earth, now available as an audiobook for the first time.

David Attenborough’s unforgettable meeting with gorillas became an iconic moment for millions of television viewers. Life on Earth, the series and accompanying book, fundamentally changed the way we view and interact with the natural world, setting a new benchmark of quality, influencing a generation of nature lovers. Told through an examination of animal and plant life, this is an astonishing celebration of the evolution of life on earth, with a cast of characters drawn from the whole range of organisms that have ever lived on this planet. Attenborough’s perceptive, dynamic approach to the evolution of millions of species of living organisms takes the reader on an unforgettable journey of discovery from the very first spark of life to the blue and green wonder we know today.

Now, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the book’s first publication, David Attenborough has revisited Life on Earth, completely updating and adding to the original text, taking account of modern scientific discoveries from around the globe. This special anniversary edition provides a fitting tribute to an enduring wildlife classic, destined to enthral the generation who saw it when first published and bring it alive for a whole new generation.

This audiobook includes wildlife sounds from BAFTA Award winning sound recordist, Chris Watson, who has worked extensively with David Attenborough on his BBC projects. A soundscape appears at the beginning of each chapter to provide a fully immersive experience of the habitat and some of the species described. A full list of the tracks, as they appear in the audiobook, is available below.

  • Prologue - Acacia scrubland dawn chorus in the Masai Mara, Kenya, featuring White-browed Robin-chat. 
  • Chapter One, The Infinite Variety - Tropical rain forest in Panama with the calls of Montezuma oropendola.
  • Chapter Two, Building Bodies - Fish and crustaceans recorded underwater on a coral reef off Seligan island, Borneo.
  • Chapter Three, The First Forests - Geysir and geothermal activity at Haukadalur hot springs in Iceland. This track also features the Strokkur geysir erupting. 
  • Chapter Four, The Swarming Hordes - Evening insect chorus in the Conkouati forest reserve, Republic of Congo.
  • Chapter Five, The Conquest of The Waters - Ocean currents through sea kelp recorded at a depth of 8m, Moray Firth, Scotland.
  • Chapter Six, Invasion of The Land - Reed frog chorus at sunset, Amboseli National Park, Kenya.
  • Chapter Seven, A Watertight Skin - Seawash around basking marine iguanas, Isla San Cristóbal, Galapagos.
  • Chapter Eight, Lords of The Air - Springtime dawn chorus with nightingale, Hambleton wood, Rutland Water nature reserve, UK.
  • Chapter Nine, Eggs, Pouches and Placentas - forest chorus along riverside platypus territory, Queensland, Australia.
  • Chapter Ten, Theme and Variation - Common Pipistrelle bats echolocating after sunset, Holystone woodland, Northumberland.
  • Chapter Eleven, The Hunters and The Hunted - Spotted hyena contact calls at midnight in the Masai Mara, Kenya.
  • Chapter Twelve, A Life in The Trees - Black howler monkeys calling across the tree canopy at sunrise in Belize.
  • Chapter Thirteen, The Compulsive Communicators - Street market, Ramnagar, Uttarakhand, Northern India.
  • Epilogue - Beach habitat in mangroves with Great frigatebirds and red footed boobies, Isla Genovesa, Galapagos.
©2018 David Attenborough (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers

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100% Pure Attenborough

I enjoy a good, long Attenborogh read. Sedatingly relaxing, and yet, stimulating. The subtle, witty humor is priceless. Sadly, intelligent, entertaining, and informative intellectuals such as Attenborogh, Sagan, Chrichton, and C. Clark are almost exctinct. I play your Audiobooks to my daughter, Mr. Attenborough, so she may gain the wonderful gift of incite into the natural world you gave to me.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Alec Davis
  • 10-05-18

Absolutely brilliant

I was some what sceptical about this at first...how could the magnificent tv series with all the amazing photography be translated into an audio recording. David Attenborough's beguiling voice in the sample convinced me to try it and I am so glad that I did.

I cannot recommend this highly enough. I know I shall play it over again and again as it makes such wonderful listening, and the word pictures he creates more than compensate for the lack of photographic imagery. In a way the time sequences of the millions of years make more sense.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Alban
  • 10-11-18

Amazing book

This is an amazing book from one of the most revered author and educator the world has ever grown.

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  • wellbeingosteo
  • 10-08-18

Attenborough at his best

Accessible look into the formation of life on earth. Narrated with David Attenborough's usual passion