As usual, I make my mark with a comment or two which are, well, not quite on the mark. Your reviews always make me long to cast aside whatever I'm reading right now in order to pick up the books you describe. What a talent!
In this case, your book review reminded me of a tidbit I read in online news this weekend. It seems that Darwin's tortoise died at an age estimated to be (I believe) ~140 years. Isn't it remarkable to think of a creature that lives that long? Imagine Darwin's tortoise as the eponymous animal of the book you just reviewed...Imagine the tea one would drink while reading.