Something Rotten: A Fresh Look at Roadkill


When Heather L. Montgomery sees a rattlesnake flattened on the side of the road, her first instinct is to pick it up and dissect it--she's always wanted to see how a snake's fangs retract when they close their mouths, and it's not exactly safe to poke around in a live reptile's mouth. A wildlife researcher with a special penchant for the animals that litter the roadways, Heather isn't satisfied with dissecting just one snake. Her fascination with roadkill sets her off on a journey from her own backyard and the roadways of the American South to scientists and kids in labs and homes across the globe. From biologists who use the corpses of Tasmanian devils to investigate cures for a contagious cancer, to a scientist who discovered a whole new species of bird from a single wing left behind, to a boy rebuilding animal bodies from the bones up, to a restaurant that serves up animal remnants, Heather discovers that death is just the beginning for these creatures.

This engaging narrative nonfiction is an eye-opening and irreverent look at the dead and dying animals that we pass by without a second thought--as well as a fascinating insight to the scientific research process.--from the publisher

176 pages             978-1681199009           Ages 9-12


This fun informational book appeals to the ick-factor, enticing kids to pick it up. This winner is a combination of color photos of these gross bugs up close and humorous cartoons depicting them in all their gross glory, a gross-meter rating each and easily digested (pun intended) facts about each. There's a map of the U.S. posting where each bug can be found, a two-page glossary and author's note.

Recommended by: Brenda Kahn, Middle School Library Specialist, New Jersey USA

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