Gripping narrative non-fiction with STEM and social justice themes that proves cities can be surprisingly wild places—and why understanding urban nature matters.
What can city bees tell us about climate change? How are we changing coyote behavior? And what the heck is a science bike? Featuring the work of a diverse group of eleven scientists—herself included!—Dr. Cylita Guy shows how studying urban wildlife can help us make cities around the world healthier for all of their inhabitants. In the process, Guy reveals how social injustices like racism can affect not only how scientists study city wildlife, but also where urban critters are likelier to thrive. Sidebars include intriguing animal facts and the often-wacky tools used by urban ecologists, from a ratmobile to a bug vacuum. Cornelia Li’s engaging illustrations bring the scientists’ fieldwork adventures to life, while urban ecology challenges encourage readers to look for signs of wildlife in their own neighborhoods.
*A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection
- Nominated, Yellow Cedar Award 2021
- Joint winner, New York Public Library’s Best Books List 2021
- Long-listed, Rocky Mountain Book Award 2022
- Commended, Science Writers & Communicators of Canada Book Award 2022
- Nominated, AAAS/Subaru Prize for Excellence in Science Books Award 2022
“A high-interest, intriguing piece of work . . . Curious readers will find this book easy to read and will learn plenty along the way. Teachers could use it to start a discussion or begin a unit on the ecosystems in urban areas.”- School Library Connection, 11/21
“If city ecology is your thing, this is a good starter book for any age.”- SMS Nonfiction Book Reviews, 01/21/22
“Acute yet entertaining writing on an exciting and diverse cohort of real-life scientists makes this book a wonderful urban ecology text for an elementary or even middle school library.”- School Library Journal, 02/22
“This is Cylita Guy’s first book of nonfiction, and she does it up right. . . . Each scientist, whose work is highlighted, shares stories, research, and adventure. They also offer a challenge for readers . . . Their stories are funny, terrifying, and intense. They offer good advice, entertain, and inform. Questions asked require critical thinking, and discussion.”- Sal’s Ficiton Addiction, 02/19/22
“Gripping narrative . . . Highly recommended for school and public library collections.”- Canadian Children’s Book News, Fall/21
“Will satisfy curious readers!”- Best Books for Kids and Teens, Fall/21