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Greystone Books Fall 2022

Of Cockroaches and Crickets
Learning to Love Creatures That Skitter and Jump
By (author): Frank Nischk Foreword by: Carl Safina Translated by: Jane Billinghurst
Frank Nischk ,

Foreword by :

Carl Safina ,

Translated by :

Jane Billinghurst


Greystone Books



Product Form:


Form detail:

Printed dust jacket
Hardcover , Printed dust jacket
Feb 28, 2023
$32.95 CAD


8.5in x 5.5 in | 1 gr

Page Count:

232 pages
Greystone Books
NATURE / Animals / Insects & Spiders

This deep dive into the wonderful world of insects teaches us to love the tiny, seemingly terrifying creatures all around us.

For many people, cockroaches are the most pesky of pests. Not so for entomologist Frank Nischk. In this funny and fascinating book, Frank reveals his love and admiration for so-called "nasty" creatures like cockroaches, crickets, and more. He shows us that even seemingly terrifying insects are beautiful in their own way—and essential to all life on Earth.

Frank never planned to study cockroaches. But when researching hummingbirds fell through, he switched to cockroach feces—and soon fell in love. Cockroaches are incredible survivors, devoted parents, and adapt to almost any environment. Nischk even answers the age-old question of whether a cockroach would survive a nuclear explosion. After reading such eye-opening and warm-hearted stories, you'll think twice before stepping on one!

From cockroaches to crickets, Nischk travels to Ecuador to record cricket sounds, where he finds jungles bursting with a riot of insect life (including bullet ants whose stings are surprisingly painful). As Nischk narrates his (mis)adventures as an entomologist, he shares stories about intriguing insect discoveries, from damselflies who lay eggs deep underwater, to zombie fungi that invade the brains of ants. Brimming with fascinating facts, incredible stories, and unbelievable anecdotes, Of Cockroaches and Crickets will intrigue anyone who has ever loved—or hated!—bugs.

  • A scientist’s unbridled enthusiasm: the author’s love for insects and other creepy crawlers is infectious and will make readers look differently at underappreciated creatures.
  • Icky fun (and funny): readers will delight in and laugh along with disgustingly good stories about spiders the size of your hand, bullet ants who bite like you wouldn’t believe, and cockroaches who are actually amazing parents.
  • The hidden lives of cockroaches: humans have always harbored a fascination with cockroaches. The author reveals their incredible ability to adapt, to raise their young, and to survive almost anything.
  • For readers of The Book of Eels and Superfly: the book’s passionate descriptions of fascinating animals will appeal to readers who love books about unusual creatures.
  • Can cockroaches survive the apocalypse? The book answers age-old questions about insects in new and surprising ways.
  • Guided by science and expertise: Frank Nischk is an entomologist, science reporter, and filmmaker who has studied insects in multiple continents around the world.
  • Foreword by Carl Safina: the celebrated author of Becoming Wild and Beyond Worlds.

Frank Nischk is an entomologist, science reporter, and filmmaker who has studied insects in multiple continents around the world. Since 2000, he has been working as a journalist and as a director of TV documentaries, including award-winning nature and animal films. He lives in Cologne, Germany.

  • Extensive galley send
  • International publicity campaign
  • Digital and print advertising
  • Promotion on Edelweiss
  • Social media campaign; influencer outreach
  • "In playful prose and resplendent detail, Frank Nischk?s Of Cockroaches and Crickets pays homage to that much-denigrated class of animals whose existence is essential to the future of our planet. Each chapter takes readers on a journey into the unseen worlds of our six-legged cousins to reveal stories of hope and resilience in the face of unprecedented environmental challenges."
    —Edward D. Melillo, author of The Butterfly Effect: Insects and the Making of the Modern World

    "Nischk's writing is compelling to the point that the reader will be checking to see that this is indeed a non-fiction book. A perfect blend of memoir, philosophy, and scientific fact, Of Cockroaches and Crickets is a grand tour of both the jungle and the scientific mind. Honest, enlightening, and hopeful."
    —Eric R. Eaton, author of Insectpedia: A Brief Compendium of Insect Lore

    "I loved joining Frank Nischk on his wildlife adventures in this thoroughly readable and hopeful book. His writing is a poignant combination of infectious enthusiasm and deep and justified concern about insects' dwindling presence in the third millennium."
    —Jonathan Balcombe, author of Super Fly and What a Fish Knows

    "Frank Nischk takes us on a delightful safari into the fascinating lives of cockroaches and crickets. Through stories and adventures he makes these creatures lovable in their own ways, while revealing the importance of insects in enriching our lives and very survival."
    —Justin Schmidt, author of The Sting of the Wild

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