life of flies


Subtitle of new book by Jonathan Balcombe, “Super Fly: The Unexpected Lives of the World’s Most Successful Insects” Leads to the first question on this week’s podcast. Why “successful”?

“Their variety, for one,” Balcombe says. “There are over 160,000 described species – and it is important to add to that qualifier, ‘described’, as it has been estimated that there may be about five times those that are undescribed. Insects account for 80 percent of all animal species on the planet. part, so it says something in there about how incredibly successful they are, and flies are arguably the most species-rich subset of insects. It is estimated that there are about 20 million flies on Earth at any given time for every human living on Earth. And they occupy all seven continents. “

Marjorie Ingalls visits the podcast this week to discuss her essay on why she finds it disturbing Children’s Literature Focuses So Relentlessly on the Holocaust.

“Just as black children deserve more than books about slavery and suffering – they deserve books about black happiness and black excellence – so do Jewish children deserve books that capture the incredible diversity and often joy of their lives. reflect,” Ingalls says. “And I think sometimes we push the Holocaust because we want to tell the kids: ‘Look where you come from; see how important it is to be Jewish; look how people died because they were Jews.’ When we’re talking about children’s books, that’s not the way to make kids feel connected.”

Also in this week’s episode, Tina Jordan looks at the history of Book Review as it celebrates its 125th anniversary; And Elizabeth Egan and Joumana Khatib talk about what they’re reading. Pamela Paul is the host.

Here are the books discussed in this week’s “What We Are Reading”:

We’d love to hear your thoughts about this episode and the book review podcast in general. you can send them books@nytimes.com.



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