I like death, and I cannot lie…

… especially when re-reading Mary Roach’s clever, fascinating and – yes, it really is! – delightful book Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers (Penguin Books).
First published in 2003, we have kept it on the shelf ever since and now it is being used as a textbook in the creative non- fiction course here at the University of Otago – as well it should. It is always either a little hard to convince people to read it (the subject matter) or people are really keen to read it (the subject matter). Roach investigates, with respect, humour and deep humanity, the various ways that human cadavers continue to help, support and inform the living world. From seatbelts to forensic science to medicine, we all owe these anonymous cadavers a great debt. Roach’s book goes some way to acknowledging this.
One to read before you die.


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