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Restless Creatures: The Story of Life in Ten Movements by Matt Wilkinson

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6

A Winning Formula

In which we uncover the body-building blueprint that unleashed the locomotory carnival of the animals

                   Truth is the shattered mirror strewn in myriad bits.

—Sir Richard Burton, The Kasidah of Haji Abdu El-Yezdi

For some species, the Darwinian thesis that all living things on Earth are related to us is a pretty easy sell. Chimps, gorillas, and orangutans are so similar to humans in so many ways—morphologically, physiologically, genetically, even psychologically—that one has to be in complete denial to reject the resemblance as sheer fluke. And despite their longer faces and typically quadrupedal postures, other mammals have the same warm blood, the same hairy skin (usually), and nourish their young with milk ...

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