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22 February 2018

Science News’ favorite books of 2016

Science book awards this year honored best sellers as well as overlooked gems. One thing these works have in common — they’re all must-reads:

National Academies Communication Award

The Narrow Edge
Deborah Cramer

Described by the judges as a “beautifully written natural history,” this book follows the epic migration of the tiny sandpiper known as the red knot and examines the big environmental threats facing this small bird. Yale Univ., $28, 2015

Royal Society Insight Investment Science Book Prize 

The Invention of Nature
Andrea Wulf

“A thrilling adventure story,” as one prize judge called it, this biography of Alexander von Humboldt chronicles the German scientist and polymath’s achievements and considers his lasting influence on scientists’ understanding of the natural world. Knopf, $30, 2015

National Association of Science Writers’ Science in Society Journalism Award

Slick Water
Andrew Nikiforuk

In this “page-turner,” as the judges called it, a Canadian woman’s battle against a corporation that secretly fracked gas wells near her home is the central story in a broader look at fracking and its potential environmental effects. Greystone Books, $26.95, 2015

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