Thursday, May 3, 2018

A Forest In the Clouds; John Fowler

Title: A Forest in the Clouds
Author: John Fowler
Genre: Non-Fiction
Publisher: Pegasus Books
Publish Date: February 6th, 2018

In A Forest in the Clouds, John Fowler takes us into the world of Karisoke Research Center, the remote mountain gorilla camp of Dr. Dian Fossey, a few years prior to her gruesome murder. Drawn to the adventure and promise of learning the science of studying mountain gorillas amid the beauty of Central Africa’s cloud forest, Fowler soon learns the cold harsh realities of life inside Fossey’s enclave ten thousand feet up in the Virunga Volcanoes.
Instead of the intrepid scientist he had admired in the pages of National Geographic, Fowler finds a chain-smoking, hard-drinking woman bullying her staff into submission. While pressures mount from powers beyond Karisoke in an effort to extricate Fossey from her domain of thirteen years, she brings new students in to serve her most pressing need—to hang on to the remote research camp that has become her mountain home. Increasingly bizarre behavior has targeted Fossey for extrication by an ever-growing group of detractors—from conservation and research organizations to the Rwandan government.
Amid the turmoil, Fowler must abandon his own research assignments to assuage the troubled Fossey as she orders him on illegal treks across the border into Zaire, over volcanoes, in search of missing gorillas, and to serve as surrogate parent to an orphaned baby ape in preparation for its traumatic re-introduction into a wild gorilla group.
This riveting story is the only first-person account from inside Dian Fossey’s beleaguered camp. Fowler must come to grips with his own aspirations, career objectives, and disappointments as he develops the physical endurance to keep up with mountain gorillas over volcanic terrain in icy downpours above ten thousand feet, only to be affronted by the frightening charges of indignant giant silverbacks or to be treed by aggressive forest buffalos. Back in camp, he must nurture the sensitivity and patience needed for the demands of rehabilitating an orphaned baby gorilla.


*Thank you to Netgalley, Pegasus Books, and John Fowler for giving me this book in exchange for an honest and unbiased review*

Hello Fellow Readers,

When I saw this book available for review at Netgalley I almost jumped for joy. I love Dian Fossey and her mountain gorillas, plus I have been needing a Non-Fiction read so it was a win-win situation. I knew going into this that Fossey would night be pictured in the best light, but the way Fowler wrote made me picture him in a negative light. He came off as this needy, whiney, selfish and naive student who wanted Fossey to dote on him. I didn't care that he bashed Fossey as a person (and some of her accomplishments) but it was the way he did it that made him come off in a bad light.

I did like the inside scoop he gave about the camp and I love that he focused on other members of the camp as well and not just Fossey and the Gorillas. Despite not liking Fowler, I enjoyed the story he was telling and I did not want to stop reading. Kudos to him on making me do that, because usually if I dislike a main character in the book, it makes the story hard to read for me. Overall, amazing book especially if you like Dian Fossey, Primates or non-fiction!     

No comments:

Post a Comment