The whole nation of Croatia awaits the return a single stork. An Austrian zoologist watches a tropical freshwater fish make a decision. A man who cannot speak finds his voice in an encounter with a jaguar. An American ecologist hurls starfish out to sea and discovers how nature functions. A Japanese yakuza gang has a shoot-out on the high seas over a cargo of sea cucumbers. A photograph of a boar, a girl and a candelabra make me write this book.

BEASTLY, published by Canongate in January 2023, tracks the gargantuan story of our paradoxical relationship with the animal world. Our journey from apes to angels and back to apes. From a 40,000-year-old flute carved from the radius of a griffon vulture’s wing to tardigrades in space. From our intimate connections to our distant disturbances.

Keggie Carew will take us on an expedition into our most revealing encounters with the animal world. From the smallest creatures to the loftiest minds; true stories that teach us about our past, the world we live in, the home we could have, and ourselves. There will be murder, power struggles, escape artists, dragon jousting, and unmanned flying orchestras in the sky. Her emissaries are scientists, explorers, poets, pigeon fanciers and a throng of creatures who will illuminate the beastly wonders of life, and the contrary animals we are instead of the gods we told ourselves we could become.

True stories from a shared planet and its inhabitants caught together in the net of life.


 Photographs are under copyright. The above text may not be used in any other context either in part or in whole without the express written consent of the author.  © Copyright Keggie Carew 2022  All Rights Reserved