The Language of Butterflies by Wendy Williams | Black Inc.

The Language of Butterflies: How Thieves, Hoarders, Scientists, and Other Obsessives Unlocked the Secrets of the World's Favourite Insect

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About the author

Wendy Williams

Wendy Williams is a science journalist and author of the New York Times bestseller The Horse: The Epic History of Our Noble Companion. Through her long career she has traversed many African countries, walked the fields and forests …

More about Wendy Williams

Praise for The Language of Butterflies

‘Enchanting … introduces us to an array of fascinating people who help tease out delightful insights into lepidopteran biology and evolution. This is a wonderful read.’ —David Suzuki

‘The butterfly’s life cycle has always symbolised transformation. In this awe-inspiring book, Williams shows us how these animals can also transform whole ecosystems, scientific disciplines, and human hearts.’ —Abigail Tucker, New York Times bestselling author of The Lion in the Living Room

‘An enchanting book about one of Earth’s most enchanting creatures: butterflies. Williams’s tale skips and hovers as lightly as the insects that fascinate her, revealing how very little we knew about them until a young German woman in the seventeenth century did what no one else had done – watch them. It’s what we all should learn to do, if we are to save and protect these fragile beings who as pollinators help feed us and who give us the simple joy of delight as they flutter by like coloured petals on a breeze. A must-read for all.’ —Virginia Morell, New York Times bestselling author of Animal Wise

‘Enchanted me from the from the very first page … This book is sprinkled with her curious wonderings about butterflies and her pursuit of understanding. Without a doubt, this is the best book on natural history I have read in years.’ —Pat Shipman, anthropologist and author

‘Look closely at a butterfly wing and the colours glow with tiny, luminous scales. Wendy Williams’ book is the same – a focused examination filled with unexpected marvels. Written with wit and wonder, The Language of Butterflies is a worthy celebration of one of nature’s most dazzling subjects.’ —Thor Hanson, author of the award-winning The Impenetrable Forest

‘Nature-loving readers will surely share the joy Williams takes in her subject in this admiring tribute to the butterfly.’ —Publisher's Weekly

‘Enthralling and revelatory. Williams is a masterful storyteller. The tales she weaves here not only illuminate the intricate beauty and astonishing intelligence of butterflies, but the consuming passions of the scientists and collectors who have fallen under their spell. I loved this book. It changed the way I see these mesmerizing insects – and the natural world.’ —Jennifer Ackerman, New York Times bestselling author of The Genius of Birds

‘Butterflies are even more fascinating than they are beautiful. Wendy Williams' reporting on these otherworldly insects stuns on every page. Read this book and you'll metamorphose into an even greater fan of these amazing animals. I loved this book!’ —Sy Montgomery, naturalist and author

‘There’s much to relish in this flashy tale.’ —Fiona Capp, The Sydney Morning Herald