Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law

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What's to be done about a jaywalking moose? A bear caught breaking and entering? A murderous tree? Three hundred years ago, animals that broke the law would be assigned legal representation and put on trial. These days, as New York Times best-selling author Mary Roach discovers, the answers are best found not in jurisprudence but in science: the curious science of human-wildlife conflict, a discipline at the crossroads of human behavior and wildlife biology.

Roach tags along with animal-attack forensics investigators, human-elephant conflict specialists, bear managers, and danger tree faller blasters. Intrepid as ever, she travels from leopard-terrorized hamlets in the Indian Himalaya to St. Peter's Square in the early hours before the pope arrives for Easter Mass, when vandal gulls swoop in to destroy the elaborate floral display. She taste-tests rat bait, learns how to install a vulture effigy, and gets mugged by a macaque.

Combining little-known forensic science and conservation genetics with a motley cast of laser scarecrows, langur impersonators, and trespassing squirrels, Roach reveals as much about humanity as about nature's lawbreakers. When it comes to problem wildlife, she finds, humans are more often the problem--and the solution. Fascinating, witty, and humane, Fuzz offers hope for compassionate coexistence in our ever-expanding human habitat.

Review Citations:
  • Publishers Weekly 05/24/2021 (EAN 9781324001935, Hardcover) - *Starred Review
  • Library Journal 07/01/2021 pg. 91 (EAN 9781324001935, Hardcover) - *Starred Review
  • Kirkus Reviews 07/15/2021 (EAN 9781324001935, Hardcover) - *Starred Review
  • Booklist 07/01/2021 pg. 9 (EAN 9781324001935, Hardcover) - *Starred Review

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mary Roach is the author of five best-selling works of nonfiction, including GruntStiff, and, most recently, Fuzz. Her writing has appeared in National Geographic and the New York Times Magazine, among other publications. She lives in Oakland, California.

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