Secrets From the Rocks (Dutton, 1994)

Secrets From the Rocks: Dinosaur Hunting with Roy Chapman Andrews

Albert Marrin

There was a time early in our Earth’s history when fantastic creatures roamed our planet. How do we know about this lost world and the dinosaurs that inhabited it 225 million years ago? People who try to answer questions about this time are a special breed. One of them was Roy Chapman Andrews. Albert Marrin follows him into the Gobi Desert of Mongolia and tells you about his discoveries there.


This excellent biography tells what little is known of Andrew’s childhood and youth, then focuses on the adventure and science of his explorations and dinosaur discoveries in the Gobi Desert of Mongolia. The fossils unearthed on his trips had an impact on our understanding of prehistoric life and cemented the stature of the Museum of Natural History in New York City. Marrin does an admirable job of recognizing the esteem due to such a robust and successful explorer without ignoring our contemporary views on excluding women, shooting rare animals, and plundering the national treasures of other countries. He includes compelling details of danger and triumph and offers scientific and political background. Many full-page, black and–white photographs illustrate this oversized volume.

—School Library Journal

This engaging biography offers a well rounded portrait of a fascinating character.

—School Library Journal

[Marrin melts] the marble of the Washington legend into something very near flesh and blood. He. . . asks readers to consider the icon as a man.


As he did in his outstanding works on Lee and Grant, Marrin again displays keen sensitivity to the inherent contradictions of a warrior/statesman. . . History buffs will . . . settle in for a satisfying cover-to-cover read.

—Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books