Remarkable Creatures

  • Finalist, National Book Award, non-fiction (2009)
  • A Best Book of the Year (2009), The Economist
  • A Best Book of the Year (2009), Financial Times (London)
  • Best of 2009 (Science),

Remarkable Creatures tells the stories of the most dramatic expeditions and important discoveries in two centuries of natural history — from the epic journeys of pioneering naturalists to the breakthroughs making headlines today — and how they inspired and have expanded one of the greatest ideas of modern science: evolution. We will encounter many amazing creatures of the past and present — giant sloths, gaudy butterflies, dinosaurs, ape-men, and much more — but the most remarkable creatures in these stories are the men and women. They are, without exception, remarkable people who have experienced and accomplished extraordinary things. Leading biologist and award-winning author Sean B. Carroll chronicles the exploits of a group of explorers who walked where no one had walked, saw what no one had seen, and thought what no one else had thought. Their achievements sparked a revolution that changed, profoundly and forever, our perception of the living world and our place within it.

Remarkable Creatures is published North America by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and in the UK by Quercus.

"One would be hard-pressed to find a more accessible or timely celebration of the spirit of epic scientific adventure than Carroll's charming and enlightening book”
San Francisco Chronicle

“This year marks the 150th anniversary of the publication of Charles Darwin's masterpiece On the Origin of Species. While this event, so seminal in the history of science, will be celebrated in a number of books slated to appear in 2009, none is likely to prove more compelling a read than Sean B. Carroll's Remarkable Creatures: Epic Adventures in the Search for the Origin of Species.”
The Oregonian

“… delightful … being a scientist himself, he understands and conveys the adventure of scientific discovery, the passionate desire to know”
- Sunday Telegraph (U.K.)

“Best (of the many Darwin books just published) … is Sean Carroll's Remarkable Creatures, which manages to combine a wide narrative sweep with wonderful details and superb writing”
Financial Times (U.K.)

“His authority is delightfully lightened by a talent for storytelling … the book should be read by all who marvel at the natural world and would make a suitable present for any inquisitive student from 16 onwards who shows the slightest interest in biology …. This is a rattling good tale”
Irish Times

“leaves you with an overwhelming sense of awe and respect for the most remarkable of creatures, the men and women who searched for the origins of species and in doing so gave us a profound sense of place among life on Earth.”
The Guardian (UK)

“As fast-paced as a detective story, the book is a primer on the joy of being an evolutionary biologist, written by one of our best modern practitioners… Remarkable Creatures is the book to give those inquisitve relatives, or even more important for our society's future, their kids.”
- Nature

“Darwin's musings on the origin of species did not spring fully formed from his mind. Sean B. Carroll offers the back-story, weaving palaeontology, naturalism and molecular biology into an epic, enjoyable adventure.”
- New Scientist

“Enjoyable and instructive, this is one of the best of the anniversary crop.”
- Daily Mail (UK)

“Thoroughly enjoyable… an arresting tapestry of evolutionary advancement.”
- Publishers Weekly

“These scientific adventurers inspire the author—and will do the same for experts and novices alike—with their fearless dedication to getting at the truth, as far as it can be known. A stirring introduction to the wonder of evolutionary biology.”
- Kirkus Reviews

“With this, his third book about evolution, molecular biologist Carroll reinforces his popularity… a winner for science readers.”
- Booklist

A Conversation with Sean Carroll about Remarkable Creatures