Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Snake Charmer by Jamie James

After caring for my neighbors non venomous snake for a few days, catching geckos as food and handling the snake with care I was loaned this book, The Snake Charmer.

This book could not come with a better real life ending, finding a poisonous snake in the jungle! It wasn't me who found it, it was the Herpatologist Carl who lent me the book. When I came up for drinks he had just caught a new snake and we all huddled around at a safe distance to help identify. It ended up being a pit viper and is now safely in the freezer.

The Snake Charmer is an true story of boy interested in snakes who grows up to be one of the leading experts in the world on venomous snakes. Each chapter starts with a blurb on a different snake and throughout the chapter Joe Slowinski usually has some interaction with it.

I loved learning about all the snake facts and getting a glimpse of a world I knew nothing about; someone who turns his passion of catching snakes into a career as a scientist who goes on field expeditions and discovers new spices. I found it fascinating how different snake venom's target different systems. The Russell's viper, most dangerous, actually attacks the pituitary glad and causes it's victim to reverse puberty! The book also goes into the bad wrap snakes get and how it's sad that so many people have ophidiophobia, an abnormal fear of snakes.

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