Review of ‘Entangled Life’ by Melvin Sheldrake

I was hoping that this book would put the ‘fun’ in ‘fungi’. The subject is so fascinating but unfortunately I didn’t like this book very ‘mush'(room). There were too many long descriptions of how mycelium works and a lot of unnecessary metaphors. I don’t ‘toad'(stool)-ally regret reading it, though, because I learned something, mainly that fungi are extremely important and that they’re very clever.

Luckily, I have now run out of fungi-themed puns.

I enjoyed the parts of the book where the author was searching for and experimenting with fungi. I thought that if there were more of these practical demonstrations and less of the theory, the book would be more readable. I had to skim-read many of the less interesting bits, as my brain just can’t process them. If I wanted to find out about the latest developments in mycology (the study of fungi), it would be a useful book.

The first chapter is about truffles. I only have experience of the chocolate variety, so the references to the enticing aroma of truffles didn’t mean anything to me. I don’t know what they smell or taste like. The average person probably doesn’t either, unless they are rich, or in the gourmet restaurant business, are a truffle hunter or indeed a mycologist.

There are some nice illustrations, drawn using ink from the shaggy inkcap mushroom, plus a small section of colour photographs.

First published in 2020.

4 thoughts on “Review of ‘Entangled Life’ by Melvin Sheldrake”

    1. I can’t resist putting the puns into my reviews 😀 I think fungi are quite scary, but also cool and can be very helpful as well as harmful.

    1. I think for most of us, it’s enough to know that mushrooms are great. Thanks for reading 😀

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