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Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic Hardcover – October 1, 2012

4.7 out of 5 stars 1,401 ratings

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Hardcover, October 1, 2012
$44.94 $19.30

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Editorial Reviews

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*Starred Review* Exemplary science writer Quammen schools us in the fascinating if alarming facts about zoonotic diseases, animal infections that sicken humans, such as rabies, Ebola, influenza, and West Nile. Zoonoses can escalate rapidly into global pandemics when human-to-human transmission occurs, and Quammen wants us to understand disease dynamics and exactly what’s at stake. Drawing on the truly dramatic history of virology, he profiles brave and stubborn viral sleuths and recounts his own hair-raising field adventures, including helping capture large fruit bats in Bangladesh. Along the way, Quammen explains how devilishly difficult it is to trace the origins of a zoonosis and explicates the hidden process by which pathogens spill over from their respective reservoir hosts (water fowl, mosquitoes, pigs, bats, monkeys) and infect humans. We contract Lyme disease after it’s spread by black-legged ticks and white-footed mice, not white-tailed deer as commonly believed. The SARS epidemic involves China’s wild flavor trend and the eating of civets. Quammen’s revelatory, far-reaching investigation into AIDS begins in 1908 with a bloody encounter between a hunter and a chimpanzee in Cameroon. Zoonotic diseases are now on the rise due to our increasing population, deforestation, fragmented ecosystems, and factory farming. Quammen spent six years on this vital, in-depth tour de force in the hope that knowledge will engender preparedness. An essential work. --Donna Seaman


“Starred review. ...a frightening but critically important book for anyone interested in learning about the prospects of the world’s next major pandemic.”
- Publishers Weekly

“David Quammen might be my favorite living science writer: amiable, erudite, understated, incredibly funny, profoundly humane. The best of his books, The Song of the Dodo, renders the relatively arcane field of island biogeography as gripping as a thriller. That bodes well for his new book, whose subject really is thriller-worthy: how deadly diseases (AIDS, SARS, Ebola) make the leap from animals to humans, and how, where, and when the next pandemic might emerge.”
- Kathryn Schulz, New York Magazine

“That [Quammen] hasn’t won a nonfiction National Book Award or Pulitzer Prize is an embarrassment.”
- Dwight Garner, The New York Times

“David Quammen [is] one of that rare breed of science journalists who blend exploration with a talent for synthesis and storytelling.”
- Nathan Wolfe, Nature

“Starred review. An essential work.”
- Booklist

“Starred review. A wonderful, eye-opening account of humans versus disease.”
- Kirkus Reviews

“[Spillover is] David Quammen’s absorbing, lively and, yes, occasionally gory trek through the animal origins of emerging human diseases.”
- Cleveland Plain Dealer

“As page turning as Richard Preston’s The Hot Zone… [Quammen is] one of the best science writers.”
- Seattle Times

“[Spillover] delivers news from the front lines of public health. It makes clear that animal diseases are inseparable from us because we are inseparable from the natural world.”
- Philadelphia Tribune

Product details

  • Item Weight : 2.08 pounds
  • ISBN-10 : 0393066800
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0393066807
  • Hardcover : 592 pages
  • Product Dimensions : 6.5 x 1.8 x 9.6 inches
  • Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company; 1st Edition (October 1, 2012)
  • Language: : English
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.7 out of 5 stars 1,401 ratings
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