While The Dinosaur Heresies, by Robert T. Bakker was published over twenty years ago, it remains the seminal book that shifted the popular image of dinosaurs from plodding swamp things that were justly extinguished, to lively, rutting beasts whose children are birds. As the book acknowledges its debt to 19th century paleontologists, it’s an interesting example of how ideas can swing in and out of favor. Whether the ideas in the book have become mainstream or remained controversial, it’s a great book enlivened by the author’s own drawings.
For instance, it’s easy to make allosaurs and raptors exciting, but this book paints fascinating pictures of herbivores, like the giant long-necked dinosaurs. With such tiny heads, they might have had gizzards (big ones) to chew up the tough leaves they ate. The book argues they might have been able to pivot up on their rear legs and tail, so they could reach all the way to the treetops. And once the Jurassic stegosaurs and brontosaurs (sorry, apatasaurs) and brachiosaurs ate the trees, Cretaceous beaked dinosaurs ate the forests all the way down to the ground, paving the way for flowering plants.
Other ideas I’m not so sure about, especially the scenario proposed for the dinosaurs’ extinction. You have to remember that at the time, the asteroid impact was just one of many ideas, not the one we’re currently pretty sure about.