A top genealogist "shows how genetics helps and how it roots each of us in this magnificent story of Life on Earth in the most meaningful way imaginable."--Reunite Magazine
"What a fine long pedigree you have given the human race."--Charles Darwin to Charles Lyell, 1863
How distantly are we related to dinosaurs? How much of your DNA came from Neanderthals? How are the builders of Stonehenge connected to great-grandpa?
According to science, life first appeared on Earth about 3,500 million years ago. Every living thing is descended from that first spark, including all of us. But if we trace a direct line down from those original life forms to ourselves, what do we find? What is the full story of our family tree over the past 3,500 million years, and how are we able to trace ourselves so far back?
From single-celled organisms to sea-dwelling vertebrates; amphibians to reptiles; tiny mammals to primitive man; the first Homo sapiens to the cave painters of Ice Age Europe and the first farmers down to the Norman Conquest, this book charts not only the extraordinary story of our ancient ancestors but also our 40,000-year-long quest to discover our roots, from ancient origin myths of world-shaping mammoths and great floods down to the scientific discovery of our descent from the Genetic Adam and the Mitochondrial Eve.
"Having read it I'm still slightly shell-shocked by the range of topics that he covers, from the origins of the universe and life on Earth to the present-day DNA analysis that aims to answer some of our questions about our past. And everything in between!"--LostCousins