Book Review from


Exposing the Big Game: Living Targets of a Dying Sport

Author: Jim Robertson

Reviewed by: Several reviews


Exposing the Big Gam
Exposing the Big Game: Living Targets of a Dying Sport By Jim Robertson
Available at Earth Books
ISBN-10: 1846948088
ISBN-13: 978-1846948084


This book should come with a warning: you will be exposed to some horrific information and heart-breaking tales of the War on Wildlife. Viewer discretion is advised. Government discretion is also advised: politicians not only allow but encourage wildlife hunting for various "management" reasons in many jurisdictions, and humanity should have come up with a better way by now. As for those who kill for fun ...
~Animal Literature

Robertson’s book is an angry, detailed call for the elimination of hunting, but it’s canny in its proceedings. Horrible statistics fill the pages of this book – figures on the killing-campaigns mankind has waged against bears, coyotes, prairie dogs, geese, beavers, elk, wolves, and moose – but much more detailed statistics are available, and Robertson could have used them.
~Steve Donaghue on Open Letters Monthly

Robertson's new book could be titled "The Big and Dirty Game," because that's what it is about — the dirty, bloody business of killing other animals for sport and fun. Fun? Sure, that's what the Sportsmen say...but read about it for yourself...
~Farley Mowat, Author of Never Cry Wolf and A Whale for the Killing

Exposing the Big Game is a must read for anyone interested in the "sport" of hunting. There's nothing sporting or fair about going out to kill innocent wild animals for the fun of it. Doing this means adopting a perverse set of values. If killing a dog bothers you, as it should, then so should killing other animals. Far too many sentient beings find themselves in the crosshairs of people who claim they love the animals they kill. I'm glad they don't love me.
~Marc Bekoff, University of Colorado, Boulder; author of The Emotional Lives of Animals and The Animal Manifesto

With humor and poignant satire, Jim Robertson reveals the ugly underbelly of the "consumptive use" minority that has so dominated, exploited, and desecrated America's native wildlife since colonialism. From coyotes to bison to ravens and prairie dogs, Jim shows how each of these animals has been unfairly maligned, misunderstood and often slaughtered in unfathomable numbers in the name of "wildlife management." At once a no-holds-barred revelation of North America's ongoing war against wildlife, Exposing the Big Game is also a celebration of these animals, their rich and complex lives, their individuality and their important ecological role. With gorgeous images Jim captures the beauty and majesty of each of his chosen subjects, balancing sometimes painfully honest prose about America's relentless persecution of species-- hunted as trophies, trapped for profit or fun or killed because they are simply deemed undesirable-- with the gentle and fierce beauty of the non-human animal kingdom.
~Camilla H. Fox, Executive Director, Project Coyote and co-author of Coyotes in Our Midst and Cull of the Wild

I find Exposing the Big Game to be a very inspiring book. Jim Robertson has a gifted eye for wildlife photography and his writing incorporates humor, insight and factual observations.
~Paul Watson, Founder and President of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society

Hard hitting, on target, forthright and forceful. The author shows that it takes nothing more than the movement of one finger for a bully to deliver the easy thrill of robbing an unarmed animal of a life, but it requires discipline and self-mastery to be a defender of wildlife.
~Ingrid Newkirk, President of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)

I read this book with wonderment at what our species has done to other species, and with admiration for how staunchly Jim Robertson comes to the defense of those other species, with intelligence, humor, understanding, but above all, compassion. Warning to all hunters: this book could be life-changing, both for you and the animals so senselessly killed. Jim ends his book with these ringing words, both true and eloquent: The passenger pigeon, the great auk and the Steller‘s sea cow each held a worthy place in nature. The same cannot be said of sport hunting. Sooner or later, the obdurate hunter crouching in the darkness of ages past must cave in and make peace with the animals or rightfully, if figuratively, die off and be replaced with a more compassionate, more evolved earthling—one who appreciates nonhumans as unique individuals, fellow travelers through life with their own unassailable rights to share the planet.
~Jeffrey Masson, Author of When Elephants Weep, and Dogs Make Us Human

For years, Jim Robertson has inspired reverence for wildlife through his photography. Now he has created a book that ought to be mandatory reading for those who still think there’s reverence in hunting.
~Ethan Smith, Author of Building and Ark: 101 Solutions to Animal Suffering

Exposing the Big Game, a passionate and informed indictment of America’s hunting culture, exposes the savagery, cruelty, environmental recklessness and yes, the pathology of this most murderous of sports. Jim Robertson is that rarest of breeds, a talented writer with a gift for telling a story who is also a lifelong outdoorsman with a profound knowledge of the natural world as well as a compassionate human being with a deep love for all living creatures. Exposing the Big Game is quite simply a masterpiece, a treasure not to be missed by anyone who cares about wildlife, the environment and living gently on planet Earth.
~Norm Phelps, Author of The Longest Struggle: Animal Advocacy from Pythagoras to PETA

Not since Cleveland Amory's "Man Kind? Our Incredible War on Wildlife," has a book been more explosive in exposing the politics, hypocrisies, and brutality of big game hunting in North America than Jim Robertson's "Exposing the Big Game." Robertson has keenly studied hunters and their lobbies for as long as he's professionally studied wildlife behind the lens of his camera — and he knows them all well. In "Exposing the Big Game," Robertson strips away the veil behind the claims of government agencies and hunters themselves to show us the stark reality behind the suffering, decimation, and endangerment of America's wild animals who are targeted by sportsmen.
~Laura Moretti, Founder of The Animals Voice Magazine

Jim Robertson is best known for his breathtaking wildlife photography as well as his clear and thought-provoking articles about wildlife and the cruel, repulsive and altogether perverse nature of hunting. Now Jim has put it all together: his spectacular photography, the indisputable facts and clear reasoning in Exposing the Big Game. Jim does not mince words in describing the senselessness and depravity of hunting and the psychopaths who kill for pleasure.
~Peter Muller, President and co-founder of the League of Humane Voters

Jim Robertson is not only an enormously talented wildlife photographer; he provides a much needed voice for the animals whom he captures so beautifully with his camera lens. Chapter by chapter, the reader is introduced to each species and learns detailed facts about their natural behavior, their daily lives, and the important place that each holds in the ecosystem. We also read of the seemingly endless ways in which humans have historically exploited, terrorized, and brutally extirpated these animals. This brutality (which continues today), juxtaposed against the stunningly beautiful photographs, sends a powerful message. It is a message of empathy and understanding, and also one of much needed change in our nation’s wildlife management “practices”. Kudos to Jim Robertson for possessing the deep knowledge, the talent, and the courage to convey this message in a way that is at once both spectacular and powerful.
~Linda Case, Author of Canine and Feline Behavior and Training

About the Author:

Jim Robertson is a wildlife photographer and self-taught naturalist whose habitat is in the mountains of Western North America, beyond the reach of cable television and mercifully out of earshot of Sarah Palin’s daily sound bites. Living among the likes of elk, wolves and bears has led to a keen awareness of animals as individuals. Yet, with wildlife habitat comes the depraved concept of “sportsmen’s paradise” and the wanton evils of hunting. The painful loss of some of his cherished animal neighbors has triggered an evolution from outspoken animal advocate to all out anti-hunter. Please see and share Jim's wildlife photography at Animals in the Wild.

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