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The Soul of the Rhino: 06/28/10

cover art

Hemanta Mishra has made his lifetime work the conservation of the Indian Rhino in his native Nepal. The Soul of the Rhino highlights some of the most memorable times in his career.

I have to admit that I didn't know there were rhinoceroses in Nepal. My knowledge of rhinos is limited to what I learned from countless trips to the San Diego Wild Animal Park. They have had success with the Southern White Rhino, so much so that it's the mascot of the park. The Southern White species, though, live in Africa.

So I went into The Soul of the Rhino hoping to learn about the Indian Rhino. I expected Mishra's passion to come through his memoir. As I've mentioned in other reviews of biology memoirs, I'm looking for the next Your Inner Fish.

Mishra's book didn't even come close. Instead, it's a lot like Lost Worlds by Bruce M. Beehler. The emphasis on the book is on the people Mishra has worked with, met or otherwise had to entertain as part of his mission. He spends a lot of time giggling over mistakes foreigners make while visiting.

Once again I think my disappointment in the book stems mostly from misguided expectations. The book is clearly a memoir by a scientist; it's not a science book. Unfortunately it's catalogued and shelved (at least at my library) as a biology book.

Comments (2)

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Comment #1: Tuesday, June, 29, 2010 at 13:17:52


Why does the rhino have chains on? it sounds like a disappointing book.

Comment #2: Friday, July 2, 2010 at 10:36:31


I think the rhino is part of the royal herd. The book is disappointing because it's pitched wrong.

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