Cover Image: Interviews with an Ape

Interviews with an Ape

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Member Reviews

I was interested due to the title and the synopsis. But its very miss leading.

An interview wouldn't be one dimension discussion, yet the stories seem to be that way. It seems to be very focused on humans abusing animals, and showing little 'good' humans. I get there is people who do horrible things to animals but this seemed to go to the extreme which made it hard to actually read, but also i wouldn't be recommending for this reason. Even the animals are steretyped and they don't have an animal voice feel which again was disappointing.
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This book was a lot bleaker than I initially expected from the whimsical premise. A signing ape called Einstein conducts a series of interviews with different species of animals (and later, with various humans too). Through the course of these interviews, the author lays bare the various horrific cruelties inflicted by homo sapiens on the natural world and its inhabitants.

We see the perspectives of a hunting dog, a captive orca, an orphaned elephant, a breeding sow, a poacher’s daughter, a journalist, and every single thread reveals an unrelenting tapestry of misery and viciousness. So at first, I floundered a little, in the kind of discomfort you feel when unexpectedly faced with a graphic PETA ad. (I need to note that this discomfort is important in facing the issues in question honestly and is definitely a valuable and effective technique in raising awareness and in calling to action).

I found my footing in this novel when the various individual story threads began weaving together to form more of a coherent narrative – instead of the initial disparate tales of woe – and those connections enabled me to fully invest in the main characters, forcing me to confront previously ignored realities about how we treat the other (non-human and human) inhabitants of our world.

This wasn’t easy to read, but it was extremely well-written, and the important message within is delivered with graphic and memorable clarity. I feel like this should be on the curriculum for everybody to read, as a unique and fresh perspective on a well-worn global issue.


Review by Steph Warren of Bookshine and Readbows blog
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Fallon has written a powerful title! Giving animals a voice, this book reveals how humans have truly tortured animals. This book just highlights the dire need for us to act and speak out for these poor animals and treat them as equals
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Einstein is an ape who communicates through sign language. An interesting premise.

This book really had me thinking about the arrogance of Man and the extent to which animals depend on and are affected by Man's cruelty.

I wasn't sure whether this was my kind of book but I really enjoyed it and found a lot to think about as I read.

The irony that it takes a human to give the animals a voice is a painful reality to bare.

Overall, a great read I highly recommend.
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Interviews with an Ape by Felice Fallon is about the relationship between animals and humans and gives animals a voice.
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Wow, amazing, wonderful, stunned I don't know what to say 
A delightful book, well written and thought provoking.
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I had no idea what to expect from this book. But having just finished it I'm blown away by the power of its words.

Written from the perspective of animals suffering at the hands of humans, as well as from some of the humans' perspective, this is such an important message.

Written so cleverly, with a narrative about Einstein the gorilla, weaving its way through, I defy anyone not to be incredibly moved, and at times, ashamed, of how we treat wild creatures and destroy lives.

Political, philosophical, moving and powerful, this book needs to be read.
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This book really brought to light the suffering of animals at the hands of humans and really makes you think.  An interesting perspective written from the animals viewpoint.  Recommended.
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Sublime, sad, joyful, poignant. A timely novel that says a lot about the way humans interact with the animals we share this planet with, never more uneasy a relationship than when we have to share it with our cousins, the apes. We lack empathy to such a degree. Thank god novels like this exist.
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A really interesting and emotive read. Reading the animated voices of each animal highlighted what we all know deep down to be the truth of the injustice many animals face at the hands of humanity. Interviews with an Ape makes it so that those realities can be experienced and never forgotten
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What an extraordinary premise for a book that I fear will go under the radar publicity wise.

It begins with a gorilla , Einstein, who has learnt sign language to communicate with humans. We then hear the stories of a variety of animals who have been ill treated /exploited by humans. It would have been easy for the author to portray this in a one dimensional way, butt she addresses the complexity in which humans who are themselves struggling for survival make choices that many will not agree with.

It's bold in its concept and should be pressed into everyone's hands to make them consider where we for in the ecosystem and our  corresponding responsibilities .
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Foxhound, starved in order to chase foxes, Sow, kept in inhumane conditions to provide cheap food, Elephant, orphaned for tusks, and Orca forced to perform for humans. Their despairing and harrowing stories told via Einstein, an Ape that can communicate with humans. 'It takes a long time for people to change their ways, a single thread cannot become a chord, a single tree does not make a Forest, however a single spark can make a great fire'... 
What a unique tale, written with such emotion. No psychological plot twist, a genuine raw book about good versus evil, right versus wrong, life versus death. Excellent
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A painful, gut-wrenching read that is fundamentally important in its subject matter. In Interviews with an Ape we meet a number of animals who have had their lives disrupted from nature's intended course by humans. All are brutal narratives and heartbreaking. As an animal lover I struggled through more than one of tales. But, I persevered and was next introduced to the humans who inflicted themselves on these animals. Some were cruel, yes, but most were victims of difficult life circumstances and had to do what they needed to to survive and feed their families. A thought provoking section that showed that animals were not the only casualties in this novel. The next set of people we met were the ones actively working to better the lives of the animals by bringing hope to the cruel situations of the animals we, by now, know rather well and care for.

This is a story of man's cruelty but also one of hope. We can make a difference in the choices we make, in the food we eat, in the medicines and products we buy. We, as humans, are intelligent but must ensure the power, knowledge and reasoning we possess is used to the betterment of animals and the wider world rather than using them to fulfill our own selfish ends. Interviews with an Ape is a thought-provoking read that makes me view things differently and hope it opens the eyes of the masses to the plight of animals globally.
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This book is such a timely read. We never as humans really acknowledge the hurt we inflict on animals. Starting with Einstein the ape we understand how he lost his family and what his life was like after he was taken by hunters. Throughout this very sensitive read I was getting quite upset and felt emotionally connected throughout.
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A heartbreaking and horrifying portrait of the abuse and exploitation of animals by humans.  From poaching to vivisection, our total disregard for the pain and distress we inflict and the destruction of habitats and species is laid bare.  Told from the point of view of the animals and also the human protagonists, we see that poverty and desperation can sometimes result in unspeakable horrors.  That said, as long as we treat the natural world with such casual indifference and arrogance there will always a market and willingness to continue.
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This is one of the best and most inventive books I’ve read in a long time. If you had any doubts about how animals feel about their treat by human beings this should set the record straight. I defy you to read it and not cry - it’s so moving and it’ll be a long time, if ever before I forget about Einstein. This is a book not to be missed.
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Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC.
I’m afraid I did not get very far with this book, thus the two star rating. It may have ended up being engrossing and other reviewers loved it, but I struggled to make myself read it. 
It catalogues some of the appalling ways humanity treats animal-and each other-through the voices of the main animal characters, including Einstein, a gorilla..
I’ve nothing against anthropomorphism-Animal Farm is one of my favourite books- but the narratives were too human. Their thought processes seemed more sophisticated than those of many humans. They could understand each other’s languages, and the language of the people In whatever country they were in. Their stories are dark and bleak and horribly depressing- and I know that may be the point of this book but it just didn’t pull me in. Sorry.
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The book cover and title really leads you to believe this will be a cute little book about talking animals. It isn't. In parts it is adorable, but it is also brutal and hard to read. 
It's hard to say I enjoyed the book, but it was impactful. I makes you think, I makes you see how we interact with animals and their world. 
Grab this book for a weekend read with tissues..
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Not one for me and I can only think that the information I read about the book before I requested it gave a false narrative because it just isn’t the sort of book I would want to read. 
I will give three stars because it’s not the author’s fault the blurb was misleading.
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Interviews with an Ape is a fundamentally difficult and heartbreaking book which sadly, I fear will never be read by those that should read it. Thought provoking all the same.

My thanks to Netgalley for the opportunity to read it.
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