An Urchin in the Storm

by Stephen Jay Gould
New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1987. 255 pages.

An Urchin in the Storm is Gould's only collection of book reviews, most of which appeared originally in The New York Review of Books. "Each of these chapters uses an individual book to pursue a general theme", Gould explains in the preface, "but organizes its discussion as a critique of content." The topics of the books under review include evolutionary theory, time and geology, biological determinism, individual biologists (Barbara McClintock, Ernest Everett Just, G Evelyn Hutchinson, and Lewis Thomas), and science and pseudoscience (including a memorable demolition of Jeremy Rifkin's Algeny). The reviewer for The New York Times Book Review describes it as "[a] perfect volume for fans of Stephen Jay Gould."