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Tales from Gombe

Art / Photobook

By: Anup Shah (Author), Fiona Roger (Illustrator)

324 pages, 260+ colour photos

London Natural History Museum

1 customer review
Hardback | Oct 2014 | #216097 | ISBN-13: 9780565093501
Availability: Usually dispatched within 5 days Details
NHBS Price: £39.99 $49/€45 approx

About this book

Anup Shah and Fiona Rogers have spent much of the last decade in the company of the world-famous chimpanzees of Tanzania's Gombe National Park, getting to know their characters and learning about the intricacies of their lives. Tales from Gombe provides an unparalled insight into their world. Through endearing stories and stunningly intimate photography, it tells the story of their lives, an epic saga full of convoluted plots, family alliances, intrigue, love, passion, suffering, ambition, politics, puzzles, surprises and controversies. The chimpanzees of Tanzania's Gombe National Park are probably the most famous group of wild animals in history, having been observed and chronicled for more than 50 years. Through studies initiated by the palaeontologist and anthropologist Louis Leakey and carried out by the primatologist Dr Jane Goodall, people worldwide know some of their names and stories. In Tales from Gombe Anup Shah and Fiona Rogers introduce us to all the different characters in this unique family, from the bold and mischievous Google and the powerful Titan to the enigmatic Freud. They tell the dramatic story of this unusual society, describing all that has happened since they started studying them, while beautifully capturing the daily interactions of the various characters. The combination of breathtaking photography and rich social history provides the reader with a thought-provoking experience and evokes a strong sense of empathy and respect for chimpanzees. Highly captivating and often deeply moving, Tales from Gombe will inspire all those who read it to learn more about our closest cousins.

Reviews (1)

By L 14 Oct 2014 Unconfirmed Purchase Written for Hardback

A spectacular coffee table book for all animal lovers - this epic book does not disappoint in size, glossiness and incredible photographic content.

Except this is not just a coffee table book – and was never intended as one either.

This, without a shadow of doubt, is a labour of love by husband-and-wife photographic talent team of Anup Shah and Fiona Rogers. For over ten years they have travelled to Gombe National Park to spend time with the resident chimpanzees, first introduced to the world by Jane Goodall. This book is testament to the amount of time spent in the rainforest in the company of our closest cousin - but testament also to the acceptance of the authors by the chimps; intimate portraits such as these come after hours of sitting, waiting, watching, learning, understanding and, ultimately, loving the subjects. And if the images alone don’t melt your heart, then reading the accompanying text will surely make you feel familiar with the faces before too long – endearing stories of their family alliances, passion, suffering, politics, plots – a real-life soap opera, indeed over ten years worth, presented in one epic volume.

Looking through the stunning photos, so many relaxed portraits of thoughtful-looking adult chimps, I would love to know what the chimps of Gombe feel about the authors – after all, they are so strikingly similar to us, who is to say they don’t remember the first time they saw the authors sitting amongst the vegetation, quietly watching? It is obvious that Shah and Rogers have huge affection and respect for their subjects – and the chimps must recognise them each time and quickly relax into their daily lives that are recorded in such beautiful detail in pictures and in words.

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Anup Shah and Fiona Rogers specialise in photographing wild primates. The first of Anup's many assignments for National Geographic was a story on the Gombe chimpanzees in March 2003. This was followed by the publication of three bestselling photographic books, Circle of Life, African Odyssey, and Serengeti Spy. He was featured in The World's Top Wildlife Photographers and in Horzu magazine as one of the five best wildlife photographers in the world. He has won a number of categories in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition and is one of the 10 'masters' in the Natural History Museum book The Masters of Nature Photography. Fiona Rogers' photos have been published as full length features in leading magazines including National Geographic, the Smithsonian, Geo, BBC Wildlife and National Wildlife.

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