The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs by Gregory S. Paul

Why a book review on a field guide to Dinosaurs on a bird-related site? Because birds are direct descendants of dinosaurs and some species are actually living dinosaurs!

The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs by Gregory S. Paul is brilliant! It is the very first and most comprehensive field guide to dinosaurs. This book amazed me with its intricate drawings, vast research, the sheer number of dinosaurs now discovered! This is definitely not the limited information we had as children about dinosaurs. I remember learning about the couple of dozen of types of dinosaurs in elementary school and thinking they were so fascinating. What I learned back then pales in comparison to what I learned from this book.

The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs is a solid, sturdy book with a nicely illustrated jacket. It is physically appealing and intellectually stimulating. It would make a perfect gift, it is that quality of a book.

Gregory S. Paul covers over 735 species of dinosaurs! Who knew there were so many dinosaurs? He starts out by giving us the history of discovery and research and moves onto a thorough explanation of what a dinosaur is and then elucidates how dinosaur remains are dated; their evolution; their biology; their physiology; diseases they faced; how they spoke, behaved, and grew; the world as it was when dinosaurs lived; how they form and use energy; how birds are dinosaurs in a manner of speaking, etc. The book is sectioned off by groups and species. Each section describes the general group before leading into the various species within the group. Each species is beautifully illustrated, the paper is thick and shiny, making for perfect thumbing through to read the information or to just look at the pictures. Each species has an illustration, and a detailed description on its anatomy, growth, reproduction, locomotion, and physiology, if they are known.

Some of my favorite dinosaurs from this book:

Archaeopteryx lithographica

Archaeopteryx lithographica from The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs by Gregory S. Paul (found on page 131)

Saurornithoides? inequalis? (Aka the puffin dinosaur, my nickname for it, not the author’s or any scientific origin)

Saurornithoides? inequalis? from The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs by Gregory S. Paul (p. 143)

and the Dryosaurus altus

Dryosaurus altus from The Princeton Field Guild to Dinosaurs by Gregory S. Paul (page 282)


These are my favorite because they look like overgrown birds, don’t they? You should pick this book up, order it by clicking below or find it in your local book store and tell me what your favorite dinosaurs are and why.


The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs

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