A riveting blend of science writing and true-crime narrative that explores the valuable but often shocking interface between crime and natureand the secrets each can reveal about the otherfrom a pioneer in forensic ecology and a trailblazing female scientist.
From mud tracks on a quiet country road to dirt specks on the soles of walking boots, forensic ecologist Patricia Wiltshire uses her decades of scientific expertise to find often-overlooked clues left behind by criminal activity. She detects evidence and eliminates hypotheses armed with little more than a microscope, eventually developing a compelling thesis of the who, what, how, and when of a crime. Wiltshire's remarkable accuracy has made her one of the most in-demand police consultants in the world, and her curiosity, humility, and passion for the truth have guided her every step of the way.
A riveting blend of science writing and true-crime narrative, The Nature of Life and Death details Wiltshire's unique journey from college professor to crime fighter: solving murders, locating corpses, and exonerating the falsely accused. Along the way, she introduces us to the unseen world all around us and underneath our feet: plants, animals, pollen, spores, fungi, and microbes that we move through every day. Her story is a testament to the power of persistence and reveals how our relationship with the vast natural world reaches far deeper than we might think.
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||6.18(w) x 9.25(h) x 1.01(d)|
About the Author
Professor Patricia Wiltshire is a forensic ecologist, botanist, and palynologist, and also has a background in environmental archaeology. She has worked with every police force in the United Kingdom, and on many high-profile cases. She regularly lectures at conferences and scientific meetings all over the world, and is active in research and publishing, as well as university teaching. Wiltshire is an experienced expert witness for both the prosecution and defense, and is a registered expert with the National Crime Agency. She is a fellow of the Chartered Society of Forensic Science, the Royal Society of Biology, and the Linnean Society.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 Beginnings 1
Chapter 2 Searching and Finding 15
Chapter 3 Proxies of the Past 34
Chapter 4 Under the Surface 58
Chapter 5 Conflict and Resolution 75
Chapter 6 "I put it to you that you were there." 95
Chapter 7 A Spider's Web 123
Chapter 8 Beauty in Death 148
Chapter 9 Friends and Foes 170
Chapter 10 Last Breaths 187
Chapter 11 "An Empty Vessel" 208
Chapter 12 Poisons 226
Chapter 13 Traces 250
Chapter 14 Endings 274