by Mark Rowlands (2009). Utterly persuasive combo of autobiography and lived wisdom. It describes how the 25 years old author, a philosopher of mind by training, adopted a wolf cub – Brenin – and lived with him until his death 11 years later. This was a well-travelled wolf, living in Alabahma, Ireland, England and France. Clearly, during this time, this was by far the most important relationship Rowlands – a rugby player, and self-declared misanthrope and alcoholic – had with any other creature bar none. Funny (the primary mission of Brenin was to demolish every house and its furniture that Rowlands lived in), instructional and poignant. These external events are used to discuss the author’s dysmal views on humans – clever, scheming and deceiving apes – the nature of evil and the fundamental differences between people and animals. The former live in time, either in the remembered past or in the projected future, while animals live by and large in the here and now. The books ends with a riff against conventional notion of happiness. Philosophers believe that they can construct gigantic intellectual edifices on the basis of linguistical & logical arguments; of course, these rarely take account of the much more complex nature of reality and therefore almost always fail. What I love about Rowlands existentialist philosophy is that it comes from the gut, just like Nietzsche’s (who he cites approvingly). He lives his belief! A wonderful gem of a book that I devoured in a single sitting.