Publication Date: July 21, 2020
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A New York Times Editor’s Pick ** People Best Books ** Publishers Weekly Most Anticipated Books ** Chicago Tribune 28 Books You Need to Read Now **
“It blew my mind to discover that adolescent animals and humans are so similar…I loved this book!” —Temple Grandin, author of Animals Make Us Human and Animals in Translation
A “vivid…and fascinating” (Los Angeles Times) investigation of human and animal adolescence from the New York Times bestselling authors of Zoobiquity.
Harvard evolutionary biologist Barbara Natterson-Horowitz and animal behaviorist Kathryn Bowers studied thousands of wild species searching for evidence of human-like adolescence in other animals. With a groundbreaking synthesis of animal behavior, human psychology, and evolutionary biology, their research uncovered something remarkable: the same four high-stakes tests shape the destiny of every adolescent on planet Earth—how to be safe, how to navigate social hierarchies, how to connect romantically, and how to live independently. Safety. Status. Sex. Self-reliance.
To bring these challenges to life, the authors analyzed GPS and radio collar data from four wild adolescent animals. Will a predator-naïve penguin become easy prey? Can a low-born hyena socialize his way to a better life? Did a young humpback choose the right mate? Will a newly independent grey wolf starve, or will he become self-reliant? The result is a game-changing perspective on anxiety, risky behavior, sexual first times, and leaving home that can help teenagers and young adults coming of age in a rapidly changing world.
As they discover that “adolescence isn’t just for humans” through “rollicking tales of young animals navigating risk, social hierarchy, and sex with all the bravura (and dopiness) of our own teenage beasts” (People), readers will learn that in fact, this volatile and vulnerable phase of life creates the basis of adult confidence, success, and even happiness. This is an invaluable guide for parents, teenagers, and anyone who cares about adolescence, who will find “the similarities between animal and human teenagers uncanny, and the lessons they have to learn remarkably similar” (The New York Times Book Review).
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