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Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic

David Quammen (Author)

Overview | Formats

“Science writing as detective story at its best.” —Jennifer Ouellette, Scientific American

A New York Times Notable Book of the Year, a Scientific American Best Book of the Year, and a Finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award.

Ebola, SARS, Hendra, AIDS, and countless other deadly viruses all have one thing in common: the bugs that transmit these diseases all originate in wild animals and pass to humans by a process called spillover. In this gripping account, David Quammen takes the reader along on this astonishing quest to learn how, where from, and why these diseases emerge and asks the terrifying question: What might the next big one be?

Book Details

  • Paperback
  • September 2013
  • ISBN 978-0-393-34661-9
  • 5.5 × 8.3 in / 592 pages
  • Sales Territory: Worldwide including Canada, Singapore and Malaysia, but excluding the British Commonwealth.

Other Formats

  1. Book CoverSpillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic



Endorsements & Reviews

“That [Quammen] hasn’t won a nonfiction National Book Award or Pulitzer Prize is an embarrassment…Timely and terrifying. Mr. Quammen, a gifted science writer, combines physical and intellectual adventure. He also adds a powerful measure of moral witness: ecological destruction is greatly to blame for our current peril.” — 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

“Riveting, terrifying, and inspiring.” — Georges Simenon, Wired

“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

“[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

“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

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

“Starred review. An essential work.” — Booklist

Also by David Quammen All

  1. Book CoverThe Chimp and the River: How AIDS Emerged from an African Forest


  2. Book CoverEbola: The Natural and Human History of a Deadly Virus


  3. Book CoverMonster of God: The Man-Eating Predator in the Jungles of History and the Mind


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