Tyger! Tyger!

Valmik Thapar is one of the most visible- and tireless- campaigners for the preservation of tigers and their habitats. And being a gifted writer as well, his several books on tigers have done more to sensitise the reading public than have other campaigns.

Two books by him that were reviewed in today's Hindu are RANTHAMBHORE — 10 Days in the Tiger Fortress, and a new edition of THE SECRET LIFE OF TIGERS, both from OUP.

"The tiger has always evoked awe, fear, and fascination. Ranthambhore: 10 Days in the Tiger Fortress creates an engrossing, unforgettable portrait of this magnificent creature, featuring many images of tigers in the wild never before captured on film. The book is as much about the rich and vibrant habitat that makes Ranthambhore one of the finest places to watch wild tigers up close, as about a man who over the years has developed a special intimacy with the tiger.

Valmik Thapar, after thirty-three years of tiger-watching, finds himself in Ranthambhore once again where he confesses spending his finest ten-day stretch ever. An authentic record of what Ranthambhore has to offer to the keen observer, the more than 200 colour photographs help showcase every incident that took place as the author tracked six tigers in the course of ten days. Tigers reigning over lakes, forts, ruins, chhatris, and Ranthambhore’s famous 600-700-year-old banyan tree—the arresting photographs, captured moment to moment, meld into one another to create a visual continuity perhaps experienced only in motion pictures. A must-read for tiger enthusiasts and all animal lovers."

Secret Life of Tigers is ".... a wonderfully written account of Thapar’s observations of the life of three tigresses and their cubs through all the stages of their development, from birth to adulthood. Revealing extraordinary facts about the process of their growth and maturing. Thapar describes how fathers are much more involved in the upbringing of their cubs than was previously thought.

With a new Preface and twenty outstanding colour photographs, the second edition of this classic work provides a fascinating insight into the family life of tigers and argues passionately for the greater involvement of the government and the general public to save tigers from extinction."