Saturday, July 25, 2009

Stiff by Mary Roach

Have you ever wondered about what happens to your body after you die? If you have, Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach is the book for you. Roach writes about a number of ways in which the bodies of the dead are used: medical education and research, ballistics research, forensics research, etc. She also writes about the different final dispositions of the dead, the traditional burial, the more modern cremation, or even newer ones like composting and liquefaction. Not for the squeamish reader, Roach's book is a trip through the morbid afterlife of our bodies here on earth.

This was my second book by Roach. I thoroughly enjoyed my first, Bonk, finding it quite hilarious at many points. Stiff was a little disappointing. Her attempts at humor seemed more strained, perhaps because of the subject. It was, however, an fascinating book about a variety of topics. Overall I think I found this book disappointing because I had such high hopes for it given how much I liked Bonk. That being said, Stiff is a solidly enjoyable read. If you are curious or even just a very eclectic reader, I would suggest adding Stiff to your TBR.


No comments: