He named a five best list of books about extinction for the Wall Street Journal.
One title on the list:
Wonderful LifeRead about all five books on the list.
by Stephen Jay Gould
This superb book recounts the discovery of a rich assemblage of invertebrate fossils high in the Canadian Rockies. For Stephen Jay Gould, the extinct animals of the Burgess Shales are the world's most important fossils, outranking even dinosaurs and ape-men. On the evidence found in the shales, an astonishing variety of strange creatures appeared on Earth in a burst of biological diversity some 570 million years ago. Most of these creatures then vanished in mass extinctions, but some made it through, including the seemingly insignificant little eel-like Pikaia. Gould saves the Pikaia for the end: From this plucky survivor descended the vertebrates and, ultimately, humans. As Gould reminds us, chance plays a role of staggering importance in the history of life.