Hurricane Lizards and Plastic Squid: The Fraught and Fascinating Biology of Climate Change


Product Details

$18.99  $17.66
Basic Books
Publish Date
5.45 X 8.25 X 0.74 inches | 0.63 pounds

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About the Author

Thor Hanson is a conservation biologist, Guggenheim Fellow, and author of award winning books including Buzz, Feathers, The Impenetrable Forest, and The Triumph of Seeds. He lives with his wife and son on an island in Washington State.


"Hanson is an affable guide and storyteller, with a knack for analogy, a sense of humor and the natural curiosity of a scientist."--Jonathan Balcombe, The New York Times
"A masterful storyteller, Hanson interweaves his own formative experiences into the narrative...The book's forward-looking approach seems intended to encourage readers' curiosity about climate change, with the notion that, once suitably informed, they will feel compelled to take action."
"Open[s] trapdoors onto the vivid lives of other beings in hopes of giving humans a close-grained understanding of our role in habitat change and the varieties of adaptation that may be in store for our species too."
--The Atlantic
A Publishers Weekly Pick for Book of the Week--Publishers Weekly
"An engaging author who has celebrated the wonders of nature in books about feathers, seeds, forests and bees, he's an ideal guide to a topic that might otherwise send readers down a well of despair."
--Science News
"An outstanding introduction to a global threat."--Portland Book Review
"With contagious curiosity, Hanson nimbly avoids pedantic, moralistic admonishments. Nature-lovers will be thrilled to see science so vividly described, and will marvel at the incredible ingenuity of creatures across the globe."--Publishers Weekly
"VERDICT: This compelling read will spark the interest of everyone who cares about what is happening to the natural world."--Rachel Owens, Library Journal
"Hanson writes a hopeful and compelling story exploring various climate adaptations in the animal and plant worlds with a rare combination of engrossing clarity and robust interrogation. He encourages us to lift our own voices and actually assert change. Each enormously engaging essay proves what I've known for some time: Thor Hanson is a marvel whose enthusiasm for this planet is utterly contagious." --Aimee Nezhukumatathil, New York Times bestselling author of World of Wonders

"One of our finest writers of literary natural history takes on the most crucial topic of our times--how will life itself respond to a warming world? --and brings back answers both utterly beguiling and strangely reassuring. This is arguably the most significant discussion of the biology of global warming I know, brought to us in the intelligent, wise, and beautiful prose we've come to rely upon Thor Hanson to deliver. If you read only one book on climate change this year, let it be this one."

--Robert Michael Pyle, Ph.D., author of Wintergreen and Nature Matrix
"Thor Hanson's clear-eyed science writing meets its best topic yet in this book. While governments and publics joust over climate change, biologists studying all the ways wild animals are already responding to it are five steps ahead of the game. Hanson takes his readers on a tour of this cutting edge in our rapidly-changing world. Yes, there are looming extinctions. But before you wring your hands in despair, read this book. As it always has, life finds a way."--Dan Flores, New York Times bestselling author of Coyote America
"A wonderfully engaging tour of Earth's plant and animal kingdoms."--Times Literary Supplement
"Thor Hanson is not just a scientist and writer--he is a gifted raconteur, filled with wonder and love for the wild earth. In Hurricane Lizards and Plastic Squid Hanson brings his unique perspective to this time of ecological crisis. Rather than just a warming planet, we find stories from the infinite and varied tangle of life, with every being--from bacteria to birds--seeking to adapt with ingenuity and resilience. This book bears witness to the individual stories so often lost in climate headlines, and invites us all to live with greater depth and awareness as we seek a hopeful path forward."--Lyanda Lynn Haupt, author of Rooted and Mozart's Starling