Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers


Product Details

$28.99  $26.96
W. W. Norton & Company
Publish Date
5.94 X 8.47 X 1.12 inches | 1.08 pounds

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About the Author

Mary Roach is the author of five best-selling works of nonfiction, including Grunt, Stiff, 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.


[Roach] artfully and humorously unwraps the mystery of the dead interesting and informative read.--Deborah Love "Richmond Times-Dispatch" (9/21/2003 12:00:00 AM)
A joy to read....this is wonderful stuff.--Tim Redmond "San Francisco Bay Guardian" (5/28/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Fascinating and oddly fun.-- "San Francisco Chronicle"
[Roach] manages to make material that normally comes with a warning for the faint-hearted somehow light-hearted.--Jill Wolfson "San Jose Mercury News" (4/27/2003 12:00:00 AM)
[Roach's] firsthand accounts of places and people make this a captivating look at life after death.-- "Science News" (5/17/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Delightful....authoritative, endlessly curious and drolly funny.--Adam Wong "Seattle Times" (5/11/2003 12:00:00 AM)
An unflinching, often hilarious cultural history.--Erica C Barnett "The Stranger" (10/30/2003 12:00:00 AM)
A laugh-out-loud funny of those wonderful books that offers enlightenment in the guise of entertainment.-- "Washington City Paper"
A fascinating book and, once you pick it up, you won't likely put it down.--William R Wineke "Wisconsin State Journal" (9/14/2003 12:00:00 AM)
As fascinating as it is funny.... The research is admirable, the anecdotes carefully chosen, and the prose lively; and they combine to produce a book that everyone in the health care field should have to read, and everyone else will want to.--Caleb Carr, author of The Alienist
Droll, dark, and quite wise, Stiff makes being dead funny and fascinating and weirdly appealing.--Susan Orlean
Roach exhibits both a keen sense of humor and a sincere respect for the dearly departed.-- "American Scientist"
A very funny book....full of surprises.--Craig McLaughlin "Arkansas Democrat-Gazette" (7/27/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Roach saw some macabre things, but she describes them with respect and irresistible humor.-- "Austin American-Statesman" (4/27/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Roach displays her metier in tangents about bizarre incendents in pathological history.--Gilbert Taylor "Booklist" (3/15/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Surprisingly entertaining. Similar in tone to Bill Bryson's travel books, Roach manages to be humorous yet respectful.--Rick Mathis "Chattanooga Times Free Press" (8/3/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Every detail is fascinating.--Henry Kisor "Chicago Sun-Times" (4/13/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Her morbid subject--perverse, unsettling and voyeuristic--makes her book hard to put down.--Dean Narcisco "Columbus Dispatch" (5/27/2003 12:00:00 AM)
[Roach's] knack for detailed research and loose Dave Barry-ish style makes Stiff a leisurely and enjoyable read.--Tom Westin "Daily Yomiuri" (5/11/2003 12:00:00 AM)
A fascinating survey of the data yielded by corpses both medieval and modern.-- "Discover Magazine" (6/1/2003 12:00:00 AM)
An informative, gently funny but never irreverent look at the various uses society makes of the dead.--Tom Pantera "Forum" (6/1/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Roach is a masterful writer....Irreverent? Maybe a little. Disrespectful? Emphatically no.--Lisa Parsons "Hippo Press, Manchester, NH" (6/19/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Fascinating, unexpectedly fresh and funny look at the multiplicity of ways in which cadavers benefit the living.... entertaining, absolutely.-- "Kirkus Reviews starred review"
Despite the irreverent, macabre title, this is a respectful and serious examination of what happens to cadavers, past and present.--Michael D Cramer "Library Journal" (3/1/2003 12:00:00 AM)
As weird as the book gets, Roach manages to convey a sense of respect and appreciation for her subjects.-- "Los Angeles Times"
It's a rare talent that can make people want to throw up and laugh at the same time.--Roy Rivenberg "Los Angeles Times Book Review" (7/3/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Bizarrely entertaining.--Susan Ellis "Memphis Flyer" (8/14/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Mary Roach is an extremely funny science writer--Laurence A Marschall "Natural History"
A funny but never disrespectful look at the curious world of cadaver research.-- "" (5/9/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Roach's deliberate carefulness diminishes the topic's gore and sets a comfortable, comic tone that finds solace in its own oddity.--Tom Lynch "New City" (5/22/2003 12:00:00 AM)
What saves the subject matter from intolerable gruesomeness is Roach. Her interest is genuine, despite her droll tone.--B.T. Shaw "Portland Oregonian" (5/25/2003 12:00:00 AM)
[A] mordantly witty history of the scientific contributions made by the no-longer-living.-- "Outside"
Roach's conversational tone and her gallows humor bring her subjects to life....Morbidly entertaining.--Alex Abramovich "People Magazine" (6/2/2003 12:00:00 AM)
As informative and respectful as it is irreverent and witty....Impossible to put down.-- "Publishers Weekly starred review"
Expect the insightful with the hilarious.--Bridget Kinsella "PW Daily" (5/5/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Bring[s] alive a subject that has the potential to be deadly dull.--Steve Fiffer "Chicago Tribune" (6/29/2003 12:00:00 AM)
This bizarre tome will shock, disgust, intrigue and entertain you all at the same time.--Mary Morrison "Coral Gables Gazette" (9/25/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Though the cover...will draw many readers to this book, its deft prose will keep them returning.--Fred Bortz "Dallas Morning News" (7/27/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Whimsical, hysterical and terribly interesting.--Katy Human "Detroit Free Press" (5/31/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Acutely entertaining, morbidly fascinating.-- "Forbes"
Well-written and deadly funny.--Bruce Willey "Good Times Magazine" (6/19/2003 12:00:00 AM)
The numerous tidbits of information derived from the author's travels and interviews make [this book] uniquely appealing.--Joseph H Davis, MD "Journal of the American Medical Association" (7/16/2003 12:00:00 AM)
A quick and compelling, if slightly uneasy, read.--Justin Bauer "Philadelphia City Paper" (6/26/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Roach traces the use of the cadaver...and describes odd, behind-the-scenes moments perfect to halt all discussion at dinner.--T.D. Mobley-Martinez "Philadelphia News" (6/12/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Genuinely funny and destined to be a classic read.--Donald A Collins "Pittsburgh Tribune-Review" (6/1/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Lively and quirky....the writer's style is genuinely warm...she has a keen eye for observation of unique and ironic details.--Michael Jaffee "San Antonio Express-News" (6/1/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Every page fairly drips with dark humor.--Matt Palmquist "San Francisco Weekly" (4/30/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Well written, with a reader-friendly format.--Howard S Pitkow "Science Books and Films"
[Roach] has written a curiously funny, touching and respectful study.--Nancy Summers "Tampa Tribune & Times" (8/17/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Roach's dry, irreverent wit makes for a delightful--though never disrespectful--read.--Les Simpson "Time Out New York" (4/17/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Our own instinctive discomfort with death provides fodder for Roach's dry sense of humor throughout the book--Ana Marie Cox "Washington Post" (6/4/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Roach...goes into gruesome detail, but she also succeeds in not making the subject at hand too morbid.--Kim Colton "Willamette Week" (5/21/2003 12:00:00 AM)
Outrageously funny, irreverent"--but delightfully written, this book is difficult to put down.--Brian Richard Boylan "Denver Post" (5/11/2003 12:00:00 AM)