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In 2005, Vanessa Woods accepted a marriage proposal from a man she barely knew and agreed to join him on a research trip to the war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo. Settling in at a bonobo sanctuary in Congo's capital, Vanessa and her fiance entered the world of a rare ape with whom we share 98.7% of our DNA. Vanessa soon discovered that bonobos live in a peaceful society in which females are in charge, war is nonexistent, and sex is as common and friendly as a handshake.
A fascinating memoir of hope and adventure, Bonobo Handshake traces Vanessa's self-discovery as she finds herself falling deeply in love with her husband, the apes, and her new surroundings.
`When Woods describes her daily interaction with the bonobos, her account takes on a warm charm. Woods's personable, accessible work about bonobos elucidates the marvelous intelligence and tolerance of this gentle cousin to humans.' - Publisher's Weekly
`This mostly joyous book is not afraid to talk about the terrible recent history of the Congo, but ultimately it comes down on the side of hope-for the Congo and the bonobos.' - Booklist
`The bonobos have found their advocate.' - Kirkus Reviews