Rats by Robert Sullivan
Observations on the History and Habitat of the City's Most Unwanted Inhabitants (Alex Awards (Awards))

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Synopsis

Love them or loathe them, rats are here to stay-they are city dwellers as much as (or more than) we are, surviving on the effluvia of our society. In Rats, the critically acclaimed bestseller, Robert Sullivan spends a year investigating a rat-infested alley just a few blocks away from Wall Street. Sullivan gets to know not just the beast but its friends and foes: the exterminators, the sanitation workers, the agitators and activists who have played their part in the centuries-old war between human city dweller and wild city rat. Sullivan looks deep into the largely unrecorded history of the city and its masses-its herds-of-rats-like mob. Funny, wise, sometimes disgusting but always compulsively readable, Rats earns its unlikely place alongside the great classics of nature writing.RATS was named a New York Public Library "Book to Remember" in 2004
 

About Robert Sullivan

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Robert Sullivan is the author of Rats, The Meadowlands, A Whale Hunt, and most recently, The Thoreau You Don't Know. His writing has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, New York, A Public Space and Vogue, where he is a contributing editor. He was born in Manhattan and now lives in Brooklyn, New York.
 
Published December 11, 2008 by Bloomsbury USA. 256 pages
Genres: Nature & Wildlife, Science & Math, History, Education & Reference, Travel, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Rats

Kirkus Reviews

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Taken with the wisdom of the exterminators, absorbed in ratological study, our writer seems to believe, finally, we are like rats, rats are like us.

Apr 01 2004 | Read Full Review of Rats: Observations on the His...

The Guardian

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Rats: A Year with New York's Most Unwanted Inhabitants by Robert Sullivan Granta, £8.99 TS Eliot knew about rats as harbingers of mortality.

Mar 04 2006 | Read Full Review of Rats: Observations on the His...

The Guardian

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Rats: A Year With New York's Most Unwanted Inhabitants by Robert Sullivan Granta £12, pp243 In the rat run-up to the festive season, Keep Britain Tidy launched a campaign to admonish us about festering piles of rubbish during the season of gluttony.

Jan 09 2005 | Read Full Review of Rats: Observations on the His...

The Guardian

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Rats: A Year with New York's Most Unwanted Inhabitants by Robert Sullivan 243pp, Granta, £12 A few years ago the BBC wildlife department broadcast a documentary about the common rat: rattus rattus (black rat) or rattus norvegicus (brown, or Norway rat).

Jan 08 2005 | Read Full Review of Rats: Observations on the His...

Publishers Weekly

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Researching the names of the streets and landmarks near the rats' homes, Sullivan is led even deeper into the city's history till he is back to the 19th century, when the real gangs of New York were the packs of rats that overran the city's bustling docks.

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About.com

With a notebook and night-vision gear, Robert Sullivan sits in a New York streamlike flow of garbage becoming one with the rat.

Aug 23 2004 | Read Full Review of Rats: Observations on the His...

London Review of Books

The brown rat, or the Norway rat, is the only rat in New York City at this time.

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Bookmarks Magazine

Modeling his treatise on rats on Thoreau’s classic contemplation of nature, Walden, Sullivan examines a small plot of land—in this case, a rat-infested Manhattan alley—to explore his ambivalent feelings toward rats and uncover some life lessons.

Oct 24 2009 | Read Full Review of Rats: Observations on the His...

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