The Journey of Man: A Genetic Odyssey

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Random House Trade Paperbacks, 2002 - Science - 218 pages
54 Reviews
Around 60,000 years ago, a man—genetically identical to us—lived in Africa. Every person alive today is descended from him. How did this real-life Adam wind up as the father of us all? What happened to the descendants of other men who lived at the same time? And why, if modern humans share a single prehistoric ancestor, do we come in so many sizes, shapes, and races?

Examining the hidden secrets of human evolution in our genetic code, Spencer Wells reveals how developments in the revolutionary science of population genetics have made it possible to create a family tree for the whole of humanity. Replete with marvelous anecdotes and remarkable information, from the truth about the real Adam and Eve to the way differing racial types emerged, The Journey of Man is an enthralling, epic tour through the history and development of early humankind.

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But the writing was anything but inspiring. - Goodreads
But, unfortunately, Wells is not a gifted writer. - Goodreads
It does have the most beautiful photographs however. - Goodreads
So hard to read, it was interesting but so heavy… - Goodreads

Review: The Journey of Man: A Genetic Odyssey

User Review  - Jeff Dixon - Goodreads

This is the most comprehensive and easy to understand book about human evolution that I have ever read. Read full review

Review: The Journey of Man: A Genetic Odyssey

User Review  - Stephanie ( - Goodreads

Review @ I have known of National Geographic's genome project for years, so when I learned of this companion book, I bought it immediately. Working my way through the first few ... Read full review


The Diverse Ape1
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About the author (2002)

Spencer Wells is an Explorer-in-Residence at the National Geographic Society and the director of the Genographic Project. After studying under genetic pioneer Luigi Cavalli-Sforza at Stanford University, he began an unusual career that mixes science, writing, and filmmaking. His acclaimed first book, "The Journey of Man," combined his own DNA research with the work of archaeologists, paleoanthropologists, paleoclimatologists, and linguists to show how modern humans came to populate the planet.

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