The Leakeys: A Biography

by Mary Bowman-Kruhm

Amherst (NY): Prometheus Books, 2010. 181 pages.

While applauding Mary Bowman-Kruhm for her attempt to convey the paleoanthropological contributions of the Leakey family to middle-school students, reviewer Elizabeth Lawlor was unimpressed with the result: “How, then, is it possible to write a boring book about the Leakeys for middle-school students and their teachers? Here’s how: start with generalities and don’t get into specifics until later; change topics mid-paragraph; frequently use the passive voice; precede quotations with the complete bibliographic citation; include plenty of peripheral details about history, and maintain a consistent, bland tone.” She concludes, “In sum, The Leakeys: A Biography is a nearly adequate, somewhat untrustworthy summary with an error-ridden glossary.”