Man, the crown of creation, has set himself apart from other life-forms, regarding animals and plants as dumb and insentient. Now a pioneering scientist tells us how wrong we have been. In an engrossing tour of the many species we share our planet with, Brian J. Ford reveals how all living things feel and communicate with one another in ways that, though mysterious to us, are very real. He cites a growing body of research to show that we are surrounded not by brute beasts we can use at will but by sensitive souls with emotions and responses we must respect. We are taught — wrongly — that dreams are unique to humans. Our animal relatives dream, too, and have done so since long before we as a species existed. Do animals feel pain? The weight of scientific evidence shows they do. Mammals have languages of their own to transmit inner feelings — aggression, fear — to their fellows. Birds show astounding cognitive ability, conducting elaborate courting rituals and displaying great passion and devotion to lifelong partners. Ford's fascinating and entertaining narrative shows that within each species, whether insect, fish, plant, or even microbes, life exists in glorious and surprising variety, rich in sensation and creating a marvelously complex web of interaction with its surroundings. This exciting and thought-provoking book marks a timely revolution in popular scientific thought.