While many folks are familiar with symbiotic buddies like the clowfish/anemones and rhinos/oxpeckers, Gottlieb delves into the lesser known colleagues of the natural world. With gorgeous watercolor art and clean snarky language, it's one of my new favorites, both to casually browse and to buy for others.
Best buds, frenemies, freeloaders, bullies, copycats, hangers-on. We’re accustomed to all types of people and human interactions. But animal relationships can be just as weird and complex. For anyone who’s ever felt a bit awkward in their relationships, wait until you hear about how complicated things get in the animal world. This funny and enlightening gift book depicts charming and unusual symbiotic animal relationships in all their awkward glory.
Through delightful watercolor illustrations and funny yet scientifically accurate text, Iris Gottlieb explores the symbiotic relationships of 35 odd, cute, and unpredictable animal pairs. Here are stories of vampires, cannibalism, mimicry, parasites, and more. You’ll learn a lot about nature--and human nature--as you recognize traits of your own friends, frenemies, and enemies in this insightful, amusing look into the secret lives of animals.
About the Author
IRIS GOTTLIEB is the on-hand illustrator for the San Francisco Exploratorium’s Tinkering Studio as well as an illustrator at the Oakland Museum of California. A collector, explorer, and layman scientist, she lives in Oakland, CA.
“If you thought you knew something about relationships, think again. Iris Gottlieb has created a curiosity cabinet full of surprising partnerships in the natural world. I learned something on every page—and laughed at the witty takeaways. Anyone who loves nature will love this charming, illuminating book.” —Jennifer Ackerman, author of The Genius of Birds
“An appealing and quirky exploration of who does what to whom in nature. Iris Gottlieb’s whimsical art and prose complement one another as neatly as the relationships she describes. Delightful!” —Thor Hanson, author of The Triumph of Seeds
“A beautifully illustrated, humorous, and enlightening reminder that no living being on this earth is (for better or for worse) truly alone. I finished this book with a renewed sense of wonder at the interconnectedness of everything.” —Yumi Sakugawa, author of There Is No Right Way to Meditate: And Other Lessons
"Full of hard-to-believe facts about the symbiotic nature of animals and their intertwinings. The mongoose and the warthog, ants and aphids, vampire bats and livestock: Your last relationship was not this weird, promise." —Oakland Magazine
"Iris Gottlieb’s precise drawings about the natural world make scientific information accessible and fun." —The Herald-Sun
"The world of animals out in the wild is complicated and surprising, including the way that species help and harm each other...Each entry in this illustrated book includes a different animal pair, and how the two help — or aggravate! — one another." —New Moon Girls
“Author Iris Gottlieb … illustrates her book with bold watercolors.” —Casper Star Tribune
“Natural Attraction is a lovely, factual read, filled with illustrations and it’s a great addition to our bookshelf.” —Over 40 and a Mum to One
“I love reading about these cool-to-gross animal relationships and I love the art, too.” —Folded Pages Distillery
“An utterly fascinating browse from cover to cover, Natural Attraction is a choice pick for both personal and public library collections.” —Midwest Book Review