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The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers

Mary Roach (Author)


"One of the funniest and most unusual books of the year....Gross, educational, and unexpectedly sidesplitting."—Entertainment Weekly

Stiff is an oddly compelling, often hilarious exploration of the strange lives of our bodies postmortem. For two thousand years, cadavers—some willingly, some unwittingly—have been involved in science's boldest strides and weirdest undertakings. In this fascinating account, Mary Roach visits the good deeds of cadavers over the centuries and tells the engrossing story of our bodies when we are no longer with them.

Book Details

  • Paperback
  • May 2004
  • ISBN 978-0-393-32482-2
  • 5.5 × 8.3 in / 320 pages
  • Sales Territory: Worldwide including Canada, but excluding the British Commonwealth.

Other Formats

  1. Book CoverStiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers



Endorsements & Reviews

“This quirky, funny read offers perspective and insight about life, death and the medical profession.... You can close this book with an appreciation of the miracle that the human body really is.” — Tara Parker-Pope, Wall Street Journal

“A laugh-out-loud funny book... one of those wonderful books that offers up enlightenment in the guise of entertainment.” — Michael Little, Washington City Paper

“As weird as the book gets, Roach manages to convey a sense of respect and appreciation for her subjects.” — Roy Rivenburg, Los Angeles Times

“Roach is authoritative, endlessly curious and drolly funny. Her research is scrupulous and winningly presented.” — Adam Woog, Seattle Times

“Mary Roach is one of an endangered species: a science writer with a sense of humor. She is able to make macabre funny without looting death of its dignity.” — Brian Richard Boylan, Denver Post

“Roach writes in an insouciant style and displays her métier in tangents about bizarre incidents in pathological history. Death may have the last laugh, but, in the meantime, Roach finds merriment in the macabre.” — Gilbert Taylor, Booklist

“Acutely entertaining, morbidly fascinating.” — Susan Adams, Forbes

Also by Mary Roach All

  1. Book CoverBonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex


  2. Book CoverGrunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War


  3. Book CoverGulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal


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