Animals is a natural follow-on to Trees and just as beautifully questions human assumptions about nature. As he turns from plants to animals, Wohlleben again shares relevant science plus his own carefully honed insights on his subjects...a tidy, polite little book. Each quick chapter is a sweet rush, a palm full of candy that makes you crave just a little bit more ...packs each chapter with stories and, where it exists, scientific evidence, so the reader feels nearly sated ...doesn’t proselytize as much as nudge readers to look not just at the evidence of animals’ complex lives but at what’s in our hearts about right and wrong ...Wohlleben’s words are bound to touch even the animal-emotion skeptic.
The book is laid out as a series of short chapters, each focusing on a different emotional state and how it relates to animals ...lays out his opinions and reasoning of his belief that animals are similar to people in the way they interact with their surroundings. For animal lovers, his fascinating, enjoyable prose serves as affirmation that their furry friends are complex beings ...scientifically minded might be a little more skeptical, since it is commonly thought that animal behavior is instinctive ... Wohlleben raises other interesting connections, resulting in a narrative that is both entertaining and provocative ...insightful observations will hopefully help build a better understanding of animals and their emotional world.
...The Inner Life of Animals does not have quite the power to surprise that the tree book did. And there is not quite the same atmosphere of place ...stories are more dispersed than in the tree book, more loosely related. There is not the same concentration of light and colour. But the book is always fascinating ... Voice more than place holds the stories together. Wry, avuncular, careful and kind, Wohlleben guides us from one creature to the next ... Each story adds to a widening vision of intelligence, emotion and relationship ... The book’s impulse throughout is a willingness to value all forms of life quite as far as is humanly possible.