David Quammen

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David Quammen (born February 1948) is an American science, nature and travel writer and the author of fifteen books, five of them fiction. He wrote a column, called "Natural Acts" for Outside magazine for fifteen years. His articles have also appeared in National Geographic, Harper's, Rolling Stone, the New York Times Book Review and other periodicals. In 2013, Quammen's book Spillover was shortlisted for the PEN/E. O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award.[1]


Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, Quammen graduated from St. Xavier High School in 1966.[2] He is a Yale graduate and former Rhodes Scholar; during his graduate studies at Oxford, he studied literature, concentrating on the works of William Faulkner.[3] Quammen was drawn to Montana in the early '70s for the trout fishing. He still lives in Montana, while traveling widely for National Geographic Magazine and to research his books. During autumn 2014, he has been much involved, because of books and articles he has published, in the public discussion of the Ebola virus disease outbreak in West Africa and its spread beyond.



  • Natural Acts: A Sidelong View of Science and Nature; 1985, Avon Books reprint 1996. ISBN 0-380-71738-7
  • The Flight of the Iguana; Scribner, 1988. ISBN 0-684-83626-2
  • The Song of the Dodo: Island Biogeography in an Age of Extinctions; Scribner, 1996 (reprinted 1997). ISBN 0-684-82712-3[4]
  • Wild Thoughts From Wild Places; Scribner, 1999. ISBN 0-684-85208-X
  • The Boilerplate Rhino: Nature in the Eye of the Beholder; Scribner, 2001. ISBN 0-7432-0032-2
  • Best American Science and Nature Writing 2000 (ed.); 2000.
  • Monster of God: The Man-Eating Predator in the Jungles of History and the Mind; W. W. Norton, 2003. ISBN 978-0-393-32609-3[5]
  • The Reluctant Mr. Darwin: An Intimate Portrait of Charles Darwin and the Making of His Theory of Evolution (Great Discoveries); W. W. Norton, 2006. ISBN 978-0-393-32995-7[6]
  • Natural Act: A Sidelong View of Science and Nature (Revised and Expanded, with a New Introduction); W. W. Norton, 2009. ISBN 978-0-393-33360-2
  • Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic; W. W. Norton, 2012. ISBN 978-0-393-06680-7[7][8]
  • The Chimp and the River: How AIDS Emerged from an African Forest; W. W. Norton, 2015. ISBN 978-0-393-35084-5[9]


  • "The Keys to Kingdom Come" Rolling Stone, Jun. 1987
  • "Planet of Weeds" Harper's, Oct. 1998
  • "The Post-Communist Wolf" Outside, 2000
  • "Was Darwin Wrong?" National Geographic, Nov. 2004
  • "Clone Your Troubles Away" Harper's, Feb. 2005
  • "An Endangered Idea" National Geographic, Oct. 2006
  • "Contagious Cancer: The Evolution of a Killer" Harper's, Apr. 2008
  • "Alfred Russel Wallace: The Man Who Wasn't Darwin" National Geographic, Dec. 2008
  • "Darwin's First Clues" National Geographic, Feb. 2009
  • "The Surprising Life of Lions" National Geographic, Aug. 2013


  • To Walk the Line, 1970.
  • Walking Out, 1980.
  • The Zolta Configuration, 1983.
  • The Soul of Viktor Tronko, 1987.
  • Blood Line: Stories of Fathers and Sons, 1988.

Awards and accolades[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ http://www.pen.org/content/pene-o-wilson-literary-science-writing-award-10000
  2. ^ Long, Karen (August 25, 2008). "Ten Minutes With . . . David Quammen, author of 'The Reluctant Mr. Darwin'". Plain Dealer. Retrieved July 29, 2011. 
  3. ^ McGrath, Charles (Oct 19, 2012), The Subject Is Science, the Style Is Faulkner, New York Times, retrieved Feb 11, 2013 
  4. ^ Kanigel, Robert (21 April 1996). "Review: The Song of the Dodo by David Quammen". NY Times. 
  5. ^ Moss, Stephen (6 March 2004). "Review: Monster of God by David Quammen". The Guardian. 
  6. ^ Desmond, Adrian (27 Aug 2006). "Review: The Reluctant Mr. Darwin by David Quammen". NY Times. 
  7. ^ Roberts, Alice (10 Nov 2012). "Review: Spillover by David Quammen". The Guardian. 
  8. ^ Shah, Sonia (19 Oct 2012). "Review: Spillover by David Quammen". NY Times. 
  9. ^ Lynch, Stephen (2 Feb 2015). "How the AIDS epidemic really began". New York Post. 
  10. ^ Rhodes Scholars: Complete List, 1903-2011 - The Rhodes Scholarships
  11. ^ a b c Winners & Finalists - ASME
  12. ^ All Fellows - John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation
  13. ^ American Academy of Arts and Letters - Award Winners
  14. ^ Bp Natural World Book Prize
  15. ^ Past Winners of The New York Public Library Helen Bernstein Book Award for Excellence in Journalism | The New York Public Library
  16. ^ David Quammen - Lannan Foundation
  17. ^ JBA Medal Award List
  18. ^ MSU News Service - New Stegner professor to hit the ground running
  19. ^ PEN American Center - 2001 Winners
  20. ^ Recipients • Academic Events Committee • Colorado College
  21. ^ The Stephen Jay Gould Prize
  22. ^ Bill Ott (June 30, 2013). "Richard Ford and Timothy Egan Win Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction.". Booklist. Retrieved March 17, 2014. 
  23. ^ Annalisa Pesek (July 3, 2013). "2013 Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction". Library Journal. Retrieved March 17, 2014. 
  24. ^ "ALA Unveils 2013 Finalists for Andrew Carnegie Medals". Publishers Weekly. April 22, 2013. Retrieved March 17, 2014. 

External links[edit]