The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness

Readers who think of the octopus as only a sea-dwelling monster or a seafood delicacy should prepare to be astounded by naturalist Sy Montgomery's (The Good Good Pig) peek into the lives of these reclusive, intelligent creatures.

The moment she met a giant Pacific octopus called Athena at the New England Aquarium, Montgomery fell in love. She knew the basics about octopuses--they can change their color, regrow limbs, taste chemicals through their skin, squeeze through quarter-sized holes, lift 30 pounds with a single sucker, and engage in play and problem-solving behaviors--but wanted to know more. Although Athena died of old age soon after their meeting, the "alien's kiss" of her tentacles so captivated Montgomery that when a new octopus arrived, she continued visiting and formed relationships with aquarium staff as well as their eight-legged charges. In her quest better to understand the world of these graceful invertebrates, Montgomery eventually became certified to dive to meet octopuses in French Polynesian coral reefs and the Gulf of Mexico, attended the Seattle Aquarium's Octopus Symposium and spent countless hours with octopuses Octavia, Kali and Karma at the New England Aquarium.

Montgomery's enthusiasm for her subject is contagious. Always lyrical and at times almost worshipful, her descriptions of her encounters with these charming cephalopods and their surprising capabilities will make readers fall hard for an animal many regard with horror--and long to walk arm in arm, in arm, in arm. --Jaclyn Fulwood, blogger at Infinite Reads

Powered by: Xtenit