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A little bit of everything

Few can claim to have read all of the shell books in the museum’s vast libraries, and even fewer can attest to having opened all of its shell cabinets, but in its quest to demonstrate the diverse world of shell molluscs, it is exactly what Andreia did.

“I didn’t want this book to be just about biology. Of course, these stories are there, but I also wanted to tell stories related to the history of collections, expeditions or famous collectors,” remarks Andreia.

“The first 20 or 30 stories were really easy to select. These are the stories I tell on tours or at member events. But I still had 100 more to do. So I read every book I could find, browsed websites, opened every cabinet, and told my colleagues about their research. Everything was inspiring.

But it’s not just an interesting story that has earned a species a coveted spot on the pages of Interesting Shells.

“When you’re looking for a new story, you’re looking for the weird and the wonderful. Sometimes I’d find a really good story, but the seashell didn’t photograph well. Or there would be a nice group of seashells, but the story didn’t was not interesting enough to be included.

“But I ended up with an incredible tapestry with a bit of everything.”