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Treasured Books

The Five Books You Would Take To A Desert Island And Why

May 07, 2000

Manuel A. Mollinedo, 54, director of the Los Angeles Zoo 1. "Walker's Mammals of the World," by John L. Paradiso and Ronald M. Nowak

It's the zoo director's bible. It tells you all about every known mammal in the world. It's a two-volume set, about 1,400 pages. There's a lot of animals out there. Who knows, I might run into some mammals out there that I'm not familiar with.

2. "Crime and Punishment," by Feodor Dostoevski

I started reading the book when I was in college. I got halfway through it and then I broke up with my girlfriend. It was her book so she took it with her. It's one of those books that has been haunting me since then. I feel guilty that I never finished reading it.

3. "Guns, Germs and Steel," by Jared Diamond

It talks about how man has evolved and some of the significant human discoveries that have been made that have helped mold man into what he is today. Dr. Diamond is on an advisory committee for animal management here at the zoo. He's a professor at UCLA and he won a Pulitzer Prize for this book. I've been meaning to make time to read this book.

4. "If I Ran the Zoo," by Dr. Seuss

There are some incredible tongue-twisters in this book. It would give me time to be able to sit down and pronounce them correctly for once. It's a good children's book. Being at the zoo, I end up using it quite a bit with school groups. I assume I would be returning to a job working with animals.

5. "The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook," by Joshua Piven

A friend of mine who backpacks mentioned this book to me. I figured if I was going to be stuck onn island, I would want to have some experts advising me.

The book seems to cover just about everything--how to move from a motorcycle onto a moving car, how to win a sword fight. On a desert island, pirates might come and you might find yourself becoming a swashbuckler.

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