Thursday, September 17, 2015

National Book Award nominee features Aquarium!

Big news for octopus lovers and bibliophiles! Our friend and author Sy Montgomery—who gave an Aquarium lecture last night with Keith Ellenbogen and earlier this year—was nominated for a National Book Award in nonfiction for her book Soul of an Octopus. Congratulations, Sy!

Signed copies of the book are available in our Gift Shop.

Look for this book in our Gift Shop, along with other fun
octopus paraphernalia. 

The Soul of an Octopus is really a love letter to cephalopods in general and a couple of the New England Aquarium’s giant Pacific octopuses in particular.

The first octopus Sy ever met was Athena, who was living in an exhibit at the Aquarium. She was dazzled as the cephalopod used the suction cups on her tentacles to feel and “smell” her. “She seems curious to know more,” Sy writes. “Slowly, she is transferring her grip on me from the smaller, outer suckers at the tips of her arms to the larger, stronger ones, nearer her head. I am now bent at a 90 degree angle .... I realize what is happening: she is pulling me steadily into her tank. How happily I would go with her!”

In a sense, Sy does follow Athena into the water. She delves into myths about octopuses, she travels to visit scientists studying octopus intelligence and she dives in Mexico and French Polynesia in search of octopuses in the wild. Pick up this lovely book at the Aquarium Gift Shop!

Athena was also the subject of a fascinating and lengthy article in Orion magazine, an international nature magazine. On a cold day one winter afternoon, Athena absolutely enthralled Sy, a former Boston Globe columnist and prominent nature writer, with a very interactive visit. Like the book, it is a wonderful read.

With all this publicity and admiration for these eight-armed creatures, there will likely be more fans of octopuses around the world! For that, we couldn't be more excited.

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