Raptor Red by Robert T. Bakker (1995)
Goodreads Summary: A pair of fierce but beautiful eyes look out from the undergrowth of conifers. She is an intelligent killer…
So begins one of the most extraordinary novels you will ever read. The time is 120 million years ago, the place is the plains of prehistoric Utah, and the eyes belong to an unforgettable heroine. Her name is Raptor Red, and she is a female raptor dinosaur.
Painting a rich and colorful picture of a lush prehistoric world, leading paleontologist Robert T. Bakker tells his story from within Raptor Red’s extraordinary mind, dramatizing his revolutionary theories in this exciting tale. From a tragic loss to the fierce struggle for survival to a daring migration to the Pacific Ocean to escape a deadly new predator, Raptor Red combines fact and fiction to capture for the first time the thoughts, emotions, and behaviors of the most magnificent, enigmatic creatures ever to walk the face of the earth.
I heard about this book when Book Wanderer posted it on a list of older books that shouldn’t be forgotten back in October. I immediately added it to my TBR and it’s been in the back of my mind for some time, gaining in its sense of exclusivity because it is older and I was having a hard time locating a copy. But my new library had it so I checked it out.
I have to say that it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting but I thoroughly enjoyed it. My expectations were that it would be a really fun, light, fluffy read about dinosaurs without any in-depth information about the animals themselves. But the author is a PhD who studies dinosaurs so he included a bunch of his knowledge about that period in the book.
You get to learn about the environment, some of the history of the pre-historic era, even what the animals were like biologically, how they lived, what they ate, etc. This information is never boring or overwhelming and it doesn’t overshadow the story at all.
Even though the book is about dinosaurs, you really get to know them individually and their personalities. But the dinosaurs don’t speak or act as humans. It’s very clear that they are animals and acting upon instincts. Sometimes the author writes that, if they could, they’d say certain things, or he interprets the noises they make using words, but the animals themselves don’t talk.
So this book was highly entertaining but also educational and very unique. I’ve never come across a book quite like it so I’d love to get recommendations if anyone has read it and knows of something similar. I’d recommend it to anyone with an interest in the time period, who likes dinosaurs, or is just looking for a great story with a unique backdrop.
My Rating: ★★★★☆