Beloved Beasts: Fighting for Life in an Age of Extinction

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by Michelle Nijhuis, 2022. Paperback, 352 pages.

Winner of the Sierra Club's 2021 Rachel Carson Award
One of 
Chicago Tribune's Ten Best Books of 2021
Named a Top Ten Best Science Book of 2021 by 
Booklist and Smithsonian Magazine

In the late nineteenth century, humans came at long last to a devastating realization: their rapidly industrializing and globalizing societies were driving scores of animal species to extinction. In Beloved Beasts, acclaimed science journalist Michelle Nijhuis traces the history of the movement to protect and conserve other forms of life. From early battles to save charismatic species such as the American bison and bald eagle to today’s global effort to defend life on a larger scale,

Beloved Beasts describes the vital role of scientists and activists such as Aldo Leopold and Rachel Carson, reveals the origins of vital organizations, explores current efforts to protect species such as the whooping crane and the black rhinoceros, and confronts the darker side of modern conservation, long shadowed by racism and colonialism.

As the destruction of other species continues and the effects of climate change wreak havoc on our world, Beloved Beasts charts the ways conservation is becoming a movement for the protection of all species including our own.

About the Author

Michelle Nijhuis is a project editor at The Atlantic and a longtime contributing editor of the environmental journal High Country News; her award-winning writing about science and the environment appears in National Geographic, The New York Times Magazine, and other publications. She is also the author of The Science Writers' Essay Handbook and the co-editor of The Science Writers' Handbook: Everything You Need to Know to Pitch, Publish, and Prosper in the Digital Age.