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Ants, Ants, Revolution

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In "The Poisonwood Bible," author Barbara Kingsolver takes us to 1950s Belgian Congo via the Prices, a missionary family. While this novel is great historical fiction, it’s embellished scientifical fiction when a horde of driver ants attack an African Village. David Holway from UC San Diego gives us the rundown on local ant species while Michael Wall from the San Diego Natural History Museum highlights insect appreciation, something Kingsolver could have been better at.

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Device is a monthly book discussion with a science-based twist. In each episode, we discuss a novel that uses science to drive the story’s action, and dissect the plot device for scientific plausibility.