Silk & Venom
Silk & Venom
Searching for a Dangerous Spider
Candlewick Press (MA), Hardcover, 9780763642228, 57pp.
Publication Date: February 22, 2011
Love them, hate them spiders are feared and misunderstood by many, but certainly not by biology professor and arachnologist Greta Binford. Eager and willing to share her knowledge, she allowed New York Times best-selling author Kathryn Lasky and noted photographer Christopher G. Knight to accompany her on a trek to the Caribbean in search of the elusive Loxosceles the deadly recluse spider whose venom may hold in its DNA the answer to many scientific questions. We see firsthand her fearless search (sometimes enlisting the help of local schoolchildren), through outdoor markets, garbage dumps, and the desertlike interior of the Dominican Republic. A lively, informative narrative and intimate photos of everything from careful venom-milking in a lab to multicolored spiders in shimmering webs are likely to lure even the most committed arachnophobe.
The author and her husband, Christopher Knight, live in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and summer on an island off the coast of Maine. There she enjoys watching peregrine falcons soar on the thermal drafts above the cove where she swims.
KATHRYN LASKY's many books for young people have received such honors as the Parents' Choice Award, the National Jewish Book Award, and a Newbery Honor citation. Her picture books include The Emperor's Old Clothes, illustrated by David Catrow; A Brilliant Streak: The Making of Mark Twain, illustrated by Barry Moser; and Marven of the Great North Woods, illustrated by Kevin Hawkes. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.