BOOK REVIEW: THE FATE OF THE SPECIES BY FRED GUTERL
Note: This book is available from Amazon on May 22, 2012.
This book. Oh, this book. It was deliciously pessimistic, looking at worst case scenarios for the possible fate of the human race. Many of them are rather bleak, which doesn’t really bode well for us–since, you know, it means that most of us will be wiped out when one of these “extinction events” occurs.
One of the points the book makes is that every few hundred million years or so, a mass extinction event occurs that rearranges the species hierarchy on the planet. The last big one was 65 million years ago, when the KT asteroid wiped out the dinosaurs. 65 million years ago. You know what that means, right?
Yep. We’re overdue for another one.
So how will it happen? Will it be a climate flip (the sudden–in geologic terms–flip of the climate, going from tropical to ice age or vice versa)? Will it be a bioengineered virus–maybe a designer bug that has the lethality of Ebola and the traveling ability of the flu? Will it be someone wiping out the power grid? A new, stealthy computer virus that no one can identify until it’s killed essential systems and programs?
These are some of the possibilities that the author examines. As I said, the book is deliciouslypessimistic. I loved it. But then, I do like books that look at how the world could end.
If you’re also interested in reading about the possible ways we could kill ourselves off, I recommend this book.