Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies Review

I’ll admit I was a little skeptical when I first cracked open The Amazing Dr. Ransom’s Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies.

Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies Review & Giveaway

I’d taught a logic class for a local co-op several years earlier, and I’d taken a couple of critical thinking classes myself even further back than that, and this book didn’t look very “scholarly” to me. It certainly wasn’t like any of the texts I’d used in the past.

Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies Review & Giveaway

With it’s whimsical drawings and far-fetched narrative, I felt as if I were flipping through a copy of J.K. Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them rather than a catalog of logical fallacies. (I thought) I preferred a more straightforward, serious (some might say boring) approach to the subject.

Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies Review & Giveaway

But author Douglas Wilson obviously understands kids better than this mother of twelve, because mine have been hooked since the very first chapter.

Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies Review & Giveaway

Their interest runs deeper than just paying attention during the 20-or-so minutes I read aloud from this book daily. They are also grasping the material well enough to participate in meaningful discussions afterwards.

Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies Review & Giveaway

Not only can they answer the questions (correctly!) at the end of each chapter, but they’ve taken to discussing the concepts outside of “school hours” as well. They try to outdo one another in spotting and correctly identifying “real life” examples of fallacious thinking in advertising and the media, as well as in personal interactions with siblings and friends:

  • “Mom, Daniel says the only reason I like Ninja Turtles is because I’m too young to know better. Isn’t that an example of bulverism?”
  • “I told Joseph he needed to come do his chore, and he said I needed to stop being so bossy. That’s ad hominem, right?”
  • “Those activists say that if Texas passes the bathroom law, they’ll pee on Republican lawmakers. They’re using ad baculum, aren’t they?”

Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies Review & Giveaway

I’d originally planned on having my high schoolers read through The Amazing Dr. Ransom’s Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies on their own. After all, the book is part of Timberdoodle’s 10th grade curriculum kit, so I knew the book is geared toward older readers.

But two things kept me from implementing this plan: First, I knew my high schoolers’ plates were already full with the dual credit courses they were taking at our local junior college this semester. And, second, I wasn’t convinced by my initial perusal that the book would be worth their time.

So I decided to read Adorable Fallacies aloud to their younger siblings (ages 6, 9, 11, and 13) myself first. And I’ve been pleasantly surprised.

I can’t say the six-year old has gotten much out of it, but the nearly-ten-and-up crowd has definitely benefited. As for my high schoolers, I won’t hesitate to assign this book to them in the future, although doing so may not be necessary. They’ve felt a little lost listening to their younger brothers’ and sister’s discussions at the dinner table and are already calling next dibs on the book, so they can keep up with the conversation!

Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies Review & Giveaway

The folks at Timberdoodle gave me a free copy of The Amazing Dr. Ransom’s Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies in exchange for this honest review. They’ve also generously offered an additional copy for me to share with one of my readers.

Review and Giveaway: The Amazing Dr. Ransom's Bestiary of Adorable Fallacies

Interested? Enter the giveaway by using the rafflecopter widget below:

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  1. I can’t wait to read this to my 9-year-old granddaughter! She’s a very intense little thinker and I think she’ll eat this stuff up!!

  2. I have not yet studied Logic with my children yet. Will definitely get this book and check it out, that is if I don’t win. 🙂

  3. I have never studied logic with my kids, but it is something I definitely want to add to our homeschool. This looks like a great resource!

  4. No. We have never studied logic or fallacies before. This post makes me want to study it with my kids. 🙂

  5. We have studied logical fallacies through classical conversations! Love finding them in daily life – and the past political season was ripe for that!

  6. We use Timberdoodle so we are familiar with the logic books and puzzles, but we have never studied logic fallacies before! Though some of the concepts, like fallacies in advertising, how you have to ‘read between the lines’ on things, etc., have been discussed. This sounds like a fantastic way to get kids to really think!

    1. Yes, it is, Robbie. We love Timberdoodle, too, but this book would have stayed completely under my radar if they hadn’t sent it to me to review. I’m so glad they did, because my kids LOVE it.

  7. Oh, and I’m supposed to say if we have studied logic. My 13 yr old did an online class with Jim Nance and loved it. This would be a fun introduction for my youngest son.

  8. Wow, this looks like a great way to teach logic. We haven’t done any “formal” logic study so this sounds like a great way to introduce it. Thanks for sharing !

  9. I look forward to introducing logic into my childrens minds and Wilson’s book looks like a great way to do it. Thanks for doing a giveaway to get me and others interested in it.

    1. The giveaway was totally Timberdoodle’s idea. I really appreciate their generosity, because it is a terrific resource.

  10. We have not studied logic in the form of a logic as a subject but looks like a great book!! Always open to suggestions and other ways of introducing new information! Thank you! 🙂

  11. This looks like so much fun! I was thinking about ordering another book on logic, but this one looks like it will capture their attention better.

  12. We have studied Formal Logic with Mr. Nance’s books and planned to use the Memoria Press Traditional Logic next year but this sounds GREAT. Thanks for the information.

  13. Thank you for a good give away and for a way to enter without the use of social media other than email. I appreciate that consideration greatly. I haven’t used any logic/fallacy type books yet, but have been considering finding something in the next year or two. This looks like it would fit the bill quite well. Appreciate the review and the give away.

  14. I have not studied logical fallacies before, but I have been looking for a book like this to share with my children. Thanks for the review!

  15. This sounds like a very intriguing book! I would love to get my hands on a copy, so I entered your drawing. However, should I not be lucky enough to win it, I will have to get it ordered! Thanks again for the helpful info, Jennifer!

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