Russel Wallace : Alfred Russell Wallace (sic)
of New Zealand" (S183: 1871)
The title-page sufficiently describes this book, which is illustrated by some nice woodcuts, and several coloured lithographs of less merit. There is a good description of the Geysers of New Zealand, and of the state of the native insurrection in 1865; with some exciting narratives of attacks on Papuan cannibals in the New Hebrides. A good-sized house, built in a lofty tree and used as a fort, was seen in one of the Solomon Islands. One cannot but regret that the opportunities possessed by our officers on the Pacific Station for investigating the little-known natural history of the islands, are so seldom utilised. The author of this book often shoots, but hardly seems aware that his game could be of any other use than for food. The only natural history passage in the book is the following, dated Upolu, Samoan Islands:--"Saw a very rare bird, the Dodunculus, native name, which is peculiar to this island. It has the feet of a pigeon, beak of a hawk," &c., &c. Dodunculus! native name!!
A. R. W.