A swift flies two million kilometres in its lifetime. That’s far enough to get to the moon and back twice over – and then once more to the moon. A giraffe was once given to the King of France; she marched through the streets, dressed in the finest couture raincoat Paris could produce. A pangolin’s tongue is longer than its body. It keeps it neatly furled in a pouch near the hip.
Each of these animals is extraordinary. And each of them may soon disappear from the Earth. A lavishly illustrated collection of the lives of some of our astounding animals, this is a chance to be awestruck and lovestruck – to reckon with the beauty of the world, its fragility, and its strangeness.
Rundell’s books include Super-Infinite: The Transformations of John Donne, and Why You Should Read Children's Books, Even Though You Are So Old and Wise.
In conversation with broadcaster and writer Francine Stock