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King of the Dinosaur Hunters: The Life of John Bell Hatcher and the Discoveries That Shaped Paleontology

Pegasus. Dec. 2018. 336p. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9781681778655. $35; ebk. ISBN 9781681779300. NAT HIST
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With this fascinating work, Dingus (research associate, American Museum of Natural History; coauthor, The Mistaken Extinction) eulogizes paleontologist John Bell Hatcher (1861-1904), known as "the king of the collectors." The author's enthusiasm for his subject is apparent; as is the volume of research he conducted to write this biography. While Hatcher is the central character, readers interested in the Bone Wars—a race in the American West between paleontologists Othniel Charles Marsh and Edward Drinker Cope to collect the most fossils and describe more new species—will be rewarded with information about that saga's varied cast of characters. Complete with extensive appendixes detailing Hatcher's collections, this is a fitting addition to the oeuvre alongside Tom Rea's Bone Wars: The Excavation of Andrew Carnegie's Dinosaur.
VERDICT An excellent new science biography that will be popular with readers who already have an interest in paleontology or those who would like to develop one.—Esther Jackson, New York Botanical Garden

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