Transient and Strange: Notes on the Science of Life

Pre-Order   Ships Jan 16, 2024

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$27.99  $26.03
W. W. Norton & Company
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About the Author

Nell Greenfieldboyce is a science correspondent for National Public Radio. Before joining NPR, she was a science reporter at magazines including U.S. News & World Report and New Scientist, where she received the Evert Clark/Seth Payne Award for Young Science Journalists. She lives in Washington, DC.


In a perfect blend of science and memoir, Nell Greenfieldboyce imbues objects of study--meteorites, tornadoes, black holes, fleas--with emotional beauty. Transient and Strange is a deeply relatable account of the pleasures and the terrors of being a woman, being a mother, and being deeply curious about the universe.--Emma Marris, author of Wild Souls
For almost twenty years, Nell Greenfieldboyce's reporting on science, technology, and culture has charmed and enlightened her listeners. In these elegant, unforgettable essays, her inimitable voice guides us into more complex and personal territory, asking the questions that haunt us all.--Michelle Nijhuis, author of Beloved Beasts
[A] display of inquiry and imagination, inevitability and possibilities.-- "Booklist (starred review)"
Nell Greenfieldboyce has a writer's respect for beauty, complexity, and mystery, and a reporter's instinctive intolerance for bullshit. Although she is never sentimental, she does harbor her idiosyncratic adamant passions: a spider that builds a web in her window, a fleck of a meteorite worn as a pendant, the infinitesimal marvel that is the flea, her parents' immortal, miraculous toaster. What hope or solace there is in this universe, and in these essays, does not come easily, or cheap--and it's all the more valuable for it.--Tim Kreider, author of I Wrote This Book Because I Love You