Whiteley, Aliya

Fungi can appear anywhere, from desert dunes to frozen tundra, and create anew from rotting matter. They can invade bodies and thoughts; they can live between our toes or between our floorboards; they are unwelcome intruders or vastly expensive treats; they are symbols of both death and eternal life. But despite their familiar presence, there’s still much we don’t know about these secretive life forms.

In this illuminating book, Aliya Whiteley delves into everything from cellular makeup to the fascinating ways fungi interact with their surroundings and other species, as well as the many varied roles they’ve played in our own civilization. The vast potential of these understudied organisms is still untapped; though long used as a source of food and medicine, they could also hold the key to a variety of scientific advances, from agriculture to environmental innovations.

The Secret Life of Fungi is a glimpse into their incredible, surprising and dark world: a lyrical tour through the eruption, growth and decay under our feet, overhead, and even inside us.

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Elliott and Thompson, January 2021.   160 pages, hardcover