In a galactic misunderstanding the Yggdrasil return: From Viking mythology to primetime viewing on Reality TV’s Celebrity Council Elimination. Now the world confronts a ‘trees-have-feelings too’ paradigm. As the invader’s numbers and influence grow an underemployed forester and a platypus researcher must act. Is it time to gather the deadly arrow frogs, or can music save the world? Alternatively, have the leafy aliens saved the Earth?
Who should decide?
Return of the Yggdrasil is a thought-provoking romp through pop culture and ecological Armageddon. Topics such as sustainable agriculture, biotechnology, food fashion trends, climate change, the media, reality TV and the importance of critical thinking are explored.
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It opened the door to science and learning, and not only aliens and plants but also about the history of the earth and wonderful places that really exist. There were many times I skipped to look up locations and learn what was real ….
The funniest thing I’ve read since World According to Garp.
The premise is very interesting and makes you want to keep going. The idea of plant-like aliens is intriguing and their demands made me want to keep going. Also, the entire reality show is hilarious. You convey those characters very well, especially how the show is run and the deceptions they employed.
The death of XXXX [spoiler] was so heartbreaking, too. I know they were getting obnoxiously dangerous (suggesting cannibalism and all) but the solution made my heart ache.
I thought this was an interesting and unique story. I appreciated the dry humour and different points of view …
I did enjoy reading it. I think it is crackling with lovely ideas.
I'm going to start by saying I've definitely never read anything like Yggdrasil before. It was very interesting and gives readers a lot to think about. I love the fact that the aliens first appeared on a reality TV show
Loved the Lecture chapter – “we scientist haven’t explained ourselves well”
I really cared about the characters
A is for Antechinus
The nearly 21st anniversary edition!
From the antechinus surfing on a thong, to the yabbies hanging on the wattle... and beyond. An early reader's guide to the alphabet featuring Australian wildlife.
My academic background is in zoology and marine science, which was a factor in producing both books.
The idea for Return of the Yggdrasil was originally prompted by my studies of marine micro algae. For despite being mere single-cell life forms, some species are highly mobile and essentially behave like animals. I think we human folk often tend to see plants as passive parts of the landscape; so to observe them moving in our human timescale was quite an eye-opener.
Later this led me to an interest in plant communication. There have been several excellent books on this topic in the last decade. Examples would be: The Songs of trees, The Hidden Life of Trees, and What a Plants knows, among others. I have included a bibliography at the end of the novel.
Other interests of mine that converge in the novel are sustainable living, high-tech agriculture, food fashion and divisive social media. I would like to think these themes and others are handled in a humorous way rather than a hectoring tone. The scientific process as a creative force in the search for truth is another important message.
A final significant theme stems from the ancient Indian religion of Jainism – where the concept of ahimsa (non-violence) is applied to all life forms – including plant life. The photosynthetic aliens of my novel have a natural affinity with Earth’s plants and with this philosophy.
In a spoiler alert: fans of a certain popular Australian sport might notice a recurring motif in the background!
A for Antechinus was prompted by becoming a parent. There appeared to be a paucity of "learning the alphabet" type books featuring Australian fauna. They mainly seemed to be about bears, wolves, elephants, tigers etc. So I did my own. It was first published in 2001 and has now been re-published in 2023. Surf's up again!
A SELECTION OF POPULAR SCIENCE BOOKS ON PLANT SENTIENCE & COMMUNICATION