The book is the first popular treatment to take on board the recent sequencing of the Neanderthal genome and the discovery of Neanderthal DNA in living people. Stringer discusses the findings ably and explains why scientists are not unanimous about their importance. Ancient DNA is quickly becoming a major source of evidence about human origins and many surprises lie in store.
It’s an engaging read, but the quick pace of science will unfortunately soon make some parts of this book obsolete; already, a cave Stringer describes as “not yet properly published” has been, while a new study that isn’t mentioned has added much complexity to the Y chromosome record of evolution in Africa. My advice: read this book soon.