Last Chance to See....

Registered by garnetfairy of Sugar Land, Texas USA on 5/28/2005
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10 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by garnetfairy from Sugar Land, Texas USA on Saturday, May 28, 2005
from the back of the book:

"Douglas Adams has taken millions of readers on wild excursions through time and space in his bestselling Hitchiker's Trilogy an Dirk Gently novels. Last Chance to See continues this tradition-but the time is now and every word is true. Douglas Adams and zoologist Mark Carwardine took off around the world in search of exotic, endangered creatures. What they found will by turns amuse, fascinate, and touch you.

Join Adams and Carwardine as they encounter the animal kingdom in its stunning beauty, astonishing variety, and imminent peril: the giant Komodo dragon of Indonesia, the helpless but lovable Kakapo of New Zealand, the blind river dolphins of China, the white rhinos of Zaire, the rare birds of Mauritius island in the Indian Ocian. Hilarious and poignant-as only Douglas Adams can be-Last Chance to See is an entertaining and arresting odyssey through the Earth's magnificent wildlife galaxy."

"This is life or death stuff, but Adams is a writer who chooses not to shake his finger at the reader. He fails completly in the self-righteous-piety department. Instead he invites us to enter into a conspiracy of laughter and caring." - Los Angeles Times

Journal Entry 2 by garnetfairy from Sugar Land, Texas USA on Sunday, May 29, 2005
This was a really neat book. A quick read, it's only 221 pages. But it is interesting, hopeful and funny. It is not the usual depressing endangered-species based book. I really liked it, but it could have been longer and included more species. Unfortunatly Douglas Adams is no longer with us in flesh so there will be no more books from him. It is a great loss in my opinion.

Journal Entry 3 by garnetfairy from Sugar Land, Texas USA on Monday, May 30, 2005
Reserved for bookring

Participants as of 06-02-05

USA pammykn
USA scifitechguy
USA Chryso
USA Whitreidtan
USA FifthElement
UK catrionamoore
Switzerland nice-cup-of-tea=======has book 11-22-05
TEHRAN, IRAN katayoun
USA garnetfairy

Journal Entry 4 by garnetfairy from Sugar Land, Texas USA on Saturday, June 04, 2005
Mailed out to begin bookring 06-06-05 to pammykn Del.Conf.#03022940000216453490

Journal Entry 5 by pammykn from Decatur, Alabama USA on Monday, June 13, 2005
Received today, thanks! Look forward to reading this soon.

Journal Entry 6 by pammykn from Decatur, Alabama USA on Sunday, June 19, 2005
Adams humorous perspective was a delight to read. While in China in search of the rare baiji dolphin, the crew decided they needed something to cover the microphone ... what else, a condom. Trying to explain what they needed at the local shops was just a hoot! Thanks so much for sharing this book. I've contacted scifitechguy and will mail out as soon as he responds.

Journal Entry 7 by pammykn from Decatur, Alabama USA on Tuesday, June 21, 2005
Conf # 0305 0830 0004 1126 7103 -- mailed out today 06/21 to scifitechguy

Journal Entry 8 by scifitechguy from Longview, Texas USA on Saturday, June 25, 2005
Hey! I got the book about, oh, 10 and a half hours ago, (2:00 pm on Fri. the 24th) but for those living in a different dimension, I might not have gotten it yet. Either way, I shall enjoy reading it, even though it wasn't quite what I expected (a science/space/whatever fiction/novel/story/something), I'm sure it will give me even more insight into the vast (or not-so-vast) recesses of Mr. Adams' mind. Anyway, this post is much too long already, especially for such a simple thing as announcing, "I've got it!" (Some dead greek guy said that once, I think it translates to "Eureka!" more or less; can you tell I like using parentheses (did I spell that right?)?) Where was I? Oh yes, post too long, K.I.S.S. So long, and thanks for all the fish, I know this will not be my last chance to see what DNA has cooking for my mind to digest.

Journal Entry 9 by scifitechguy from Longview, Texas USA on Tuesday, August 02, 2005
Apologies for the delay. I had lost track of time, then I lost the book, then I lost my place... It was a mess. Anyway, I enjoyed the book, though not as much as the H2G2 series, but Mr. Adams' unique view of life certainly adds spice to any story. There were several quotes I wish I had saved, and I wish I could remember them right now, darn. After finally finishing the book, I've PM'd the next person on the list, Chryso, and will send it along as soon as s/he replies with his/her address.

Journal Entry 10 by scifitechguy from Longview, Texas USA on Friday, August 05, 2005
Finally, I've sent it off to Chryso, USPS style; Conf. Number: 0304 1560 0003 8745 3083 (or rather 03041560000387453083). check it out at

Journal Entry 11 by Chryso from Detroit, Michigan USA on Wednesday, August 10, 2005
Received in the mail today from scifitechguy; thanks! Will read, journal, and pass along asap. I have two must-read-now books ahead of this one, so I'm wearing my speed-reading cap. ;)

Journal Entry 12 by Chryso from Detroit, Michigan USA on Tuesday, September 13, 2005
So much for my speed-reading cap, heh. Sorry for the delay. This is the first I've read of Adams's works, and I love it. Adams brings the reader along on the journey, from foreign bureaucracy and backward airlines through forest and savannah and finally face-to-face with fascinating creatures. He experiences these things as we likely would, as a Westerner seeing them for the first time, filled with awe and wonder (except for the bureaucracy parts, which are another kind of awe and wonder altogether). I bought my own copy to share with friends and family, and I'm sure to read it again. Thanks so much for sharing this book, garnetfairy!

Journal Entry 13 by Chryso from Detroit, Michigan USA on Tuesday, September 13, 2005
Mailed on Monday, Sept. 12, to Whitreidtan. Del. Conf. # 0305 2200 0001 6979 1584
Enjoy, Whitreidtan!

Journal Entry 14 by Whitreidtan from Matthews, North Carolina USA on Tuesday, September 13, 2005
This arrived in my mailbox today and bumps to the top of the stacks so I can get it moving along in the ring. Looking forward to it!

A book about conservation and animals on the verge of extinction that's funny? Yes, this book is that but it's so much more. In 1988, Adams, of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy fame, and Carwardine, a zoologist combined to search out some of the world's endangered species for a BBC radio show and this is the book that resulted from this collaboration. They took 3 months and searched out Komodo dragons, kakapos (a NZ bird), Yangtze River dolphins, fruit bats, lemurs, northern white rhinos and more. The resulting book is an ode to these disappearing species as well as a bit of a funny travelogue. Adams has a great sense of humor and he uses it to full effect here. Underlying the current of entertainment, though is a sadness at what our (human beings') recklessness has wrought in the animal world. The good news is that efforts are being made to save these particular creatures but we still have a long way to go. This really was both worthwhile and fun reading, a combination that doesn't often occur, at least in my world.

I didn't get around to posting that I'd mailed it but since it's already arrived, I won't worry too much about it!

Journal Entry 15 by FifthElement from Warrensburg, Missouri USA on Thursday, September 22, 2005
Got this today in the mail. Can't wait to dive in and check it out.
Thanks for the bookring garnetfairy.

Journal Entry 16 by FifthElement from Warrensburg, Missouri USA on Tuesday, September 27, 2005
Finished Last Chance to See last night. I have the address of the next person in line and will be sending it out on Friday.
The most interesting parts of the book included the Kakapo (a flightless bird I had never heard of before), the problems of getting to and arranging the travel plans (one of the reasons I'm glad that there are some people willing to go through all that so we can get a chance to see a book like this as I would not), the story at the end of the book that involves books of knowledge, and last but not least the listings of the organisations you can write to and/or make a donation to. All in all an excellent book.

10-29-05 put into the mail on its way to the UK.

Journal Entry 17 by appletreen from Coalville, Leicestershire United Kingdom on Friday, November 04, 2005
Arrived safely today, thank you. I will apologise in advance that I have become rather inundated with work and also have a couple of other rings to read before I get to this one. I shall endeavour to read the book within the month, and there will be no delay in sending the book on as I already have nice-cup-of-tea's address.

Journal Entry 18 by appletreen from Coalville, Leicestershire United Kingdom on Monday, November 14, 2005
Fifteen years on and still the plight of some of these endangered animals goes on. Still the big monkeys threaten the survival off all other living things with whom they share this Earth. Have we learnt nothing? It is a shame that DNA did not live to see some of these creatures brought back from the brink of extinction.

It is also a shame that some of the animals mentioned in this book are still not widely known about. I thank Douglas Adams and Mark Carwardine for their work that has stimulated me into finding out more about such creatures as the kakapo parrot, the baiji dolphin and the echo parakeet.

Journal Entry 19 by nice-cup-of-tea from Zürich, Zürich Switzerland on Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Thanks Catrionamoore for sending this to me, plopped in my mailbox today, and thank you to Garnetfairy for sharing :-)

Journal Entry 20 by nice-cup-of-tea from Zürich, Zürich Switzerland on Thursday, November 24, 2005
What a great book! DNA's talent is in bringing characters and the animals so alive, and he has a nice line in self-deprecating humour and honesty!

I don't think I can add much to the journal entries above, except to say that I so enjoyed reading this. In fact at one point I laughed out load in bed, prompting hubbie to ask what was so funny...

The laugh out loud bit
(Douglas is sitting very close to a gorilla and is making notes on pink paper, closely watched by the gorilla!)
"This seemed to interest him a little more. I suppose he had simply never seen pink writing paper before. His eyes followed as my hand squiggled across the paper, and after a while he reached out and touched first the paper and then the top of my ballpoint pen - not to take it away from me, or even to interrupt me, just to see what it was and what it felt like. I felt very moved by this, and had a foolish impulse to what to show him my camera as well." (p.80-81)

My other favourite bit
"Once we had revived ourselves with the sort of mug of tea that makes the desert bloom and angels sing, we rattled and rolled our way back to the base..." (p.85)

will pm niani today for her address.

Journal Entry 21 by niana from Deventer, Overijssel Netherlands on Thursday, December 08, 2005
This book has arrived safe in Deventer, Netherlands. I just read the chapter on New Zealand (while drinking a really nice cup of tea, thanks!) and enjoyed it very much. We were there on holiday last month, and though we didn't get to see the komodo, we found quite a few other interesting animals.

Thanks very much garnetfairy for sharing, and thanks to nice-cup-of-tea for sending the book to me.

Journal Entry 22 by niana from Deventer, Overijssel Netherlands on Monday, December 12, 2005
Every now and then one stumbles upon a book that touches the heart. For me, this book is one of those. As always, Douglas Adams is a fun writer, but this was much more. I was particularly moved by the story about the baiji-dolphins, since I've recently had the pleasure to encounter some dusky's and bottlenoses. They were so beautiful, so alive, so... free. After that, reading the following about the life of the baiji is chilling:
"As I watched the wind ruffling over the bilious surface of the Yangtze, I realized with the vividness of shock that somewhere beneath or around me there were intelligent animals whose perceptive universe we could scarcely begin to imagine, living in a seething, poisoned, deafening world, and that their lives were probably passed in continual bewilderment, hunger, pain, and fear."

Nowadays, despite the efforts of the conservationists, the baiji are practically extinct. A lot of information about them can be found at this excellent website:

And of course the baiji dolphins aren't the only ones in danger. This journal entry probably isn't the appropriate place, but I just have to tell you this. At the Kaikoura centre that organised our dolphin encounter we were told this horrible story about the regular killing of hundreds of dolphins in Taiji, Japan. I don't have the heart to write down all the terrible details here, but thinking about it makes me very sad, and even more angry. I would like to ask you to take a look at this website so you know what is going on:

Journal Entry 23 by niana from Deventer, Overijssel Netherlands on Monday, January 16, 2006
At last this book is on it's way to Katayoun in Iran, I brought it to the postoffice last friday. Economy mail (sry, I'm sort of on a short budget right now) so it will hopefully arrive in a week or two. It took so long because we had some trouble in the PM-department, but finally I obtained the address. And a lovely picture of a very unique animal as well: the sock-eating monster-cow!
You can see it here (we figured he might have something to do with vanishing PM's as well ;-) Great link Katayoun, thanx!

Journal Entry 24 by wingkatayounwing from Tehran, Tehran Iran on Saturday, February 18, 2006
three book in one day!! i think my postman is reading the books before passing them on!! also got one book on hand and one in the wings before i get to my three so will be probably a couple of weeks before i get to this. but will be back! thanks niana and garnetfairy

Journal Entry 25 by wingkatayounwing from Tehran, Tehran Iran on Tuesday, February 28, 2006
an excerpt from my bookshelf "Feb 25: i'm sick and so i think would be behind schedule on the ring on 8-10 day. got the flu, but can't say only the flu cause there is no only about it; my cough would bring tears to the coldest heart, my tummy is doing the cha-cha and the temperature is havinf a field day at the roller coasters. and you'd think if one is sick and lieing down all the time then there is all the time in the world to read books, not so, it's lieing down and drifting in and out of sleep and not really having the energy to do anything. so sorry about the delay, well gotta go and do some coughing and moaning! :)" so sorry for a bit of delay.

Journal Entry 26 by wingkatayounwing from Tehran, Tehran Iran on Saturday, March 11, 2006
the most wonderful book, this was great. i knew i liked douglas adams alot but he's simply great and all the time i was thinking he's also not here anymore, compared to 300 million, we don't have all that much here also and yet it seems that according to this book we do are best to create as much havoc and carnage as we can :( ... i loved the book, didn't say that i was too proud of myself or liked myself all that much after reading it.

thanks so much garnetfairy for this book and niana for mailing it. it is now ready to go back, and garentfairy i hope that you again make another ring of it, i think we should all read it

"The great thing about being the only species that makes a distinctioon between right and wrong is that we can make
up the rules for ourselves as we go along. " Douglas Adams - Last Chance to See

Journal Entry 27 by wingkatayounwing from Tehran, Tehran Iran on Saturday, March 18, 2006
mailed to garnetfairy today, it should take (touch wood!) not more than a month to get there. happy sailing. thanks everyone again for a lovely ring.

Journal Entry 28 by garnetfairy from Sugar Land, Texas USA on Friday, March 31, 2006
Hurray! The book made a world tour and landed back home today. Thank you katayoun for the extras you put in with the book. They are most appreciated! The bookmark is just fabulous!! and now I have some stamps from Iran for my collection as well as the banknotes (gee I hope they are inexpensive)!!! and a pretty postcard too.

I am glad everyone enjoyed the book! I think it is an important one. I want my son to read it next...who knows, maybe it will be a ring again someday if there is interest.

Take care everyone! Happy reading!!

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