Today we live in snug, well-furnished houses surrounded by the trappings of a civilised life. But we are not alone – we suffer a constant stream of unwanted visitors. Our houses, our food, our belongings, our very existence are under constant attack from a host of invaders eager to take advantage of our shelter, our food stores and our tasty soft furnishings.
From bats in the belfry to beetles in the cellar, moths in the wardrobe and mosquitoes in the bedroom, humans cannot escape the attentions of the animal kingdom. Nature may be red in tooth and claw, but when it's our blood the bedbugs are after, when it's our cereal bowl that's littered with mouse droppings, and when it's our favourite chair that collapses due to woodworm in the legs, it really brings it home the fact that we and our homes are part of nature too.
House Guests, House Pests represents a 21st century version of the classic Mediaeval bestiary. It poses questions such as where these animals came from, can we live with them, can we get rid of them, and should we? Written in Richard Jones's engaging style and with a funky-retro design, House Guests, House Pests will be a book to treasure.
Richard Jones is one of the co-authors of Little Book of Nits. A fellow of the Royal Entomological Society and past president of the British Entomological Society, Richard now writes about insects, nature and the environment for BBC Wildlife, the Guardian, Gardeners' World and Country Living.