Given everything that squid and owls have in common, why shouldn't they switch places for a while? That's the question that designer John Holbo asks in the beautifully-illustrated tale Squid & Owl, a romp through taxonomy, science and retro illustration.

Holbo is a philosophy professor when he isn't concocting weird tales of squid, and it shows. The book starts with his whimsical musings on the scientific names for "owl" and "squid," and then abruptly becomes a meditation on why squid and owl are considered "binary." Why can't they change places? It's a little like reading a Victorian children's book and suddenly discovering that in fact you're buried knee-deep in an essay on language and deconstruction. Which isn't to say it isn't completely fun and silly. I've excerpted a few pages from his book, which you can see all of on his Flickr stream, and buy a copy of at Blurb.