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Book Review: Possums Are Not Cute!: And Other Myths About Nature’s Most Misunderstood Critter
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Possums Are Not Cute!
And Other Myths about Nature’s Most Misunderstood Critter
Hardcover | Kindle Edition
By Ally Burguieres
Publisher: Quirk Books
Release Date: May 10, 2022

Hello, I’m the person on your social media feed who shares memes that say “Hello, I’m an opossum, please don’t hurt me, I mean you no harm” every two weeks. That’s because the opossum, which is commonly referred to as “possum,” the name of its distant cousins from down under, is so misunderstood. People often mistake these climbing critters for rats or raccoons who could carry rabies and consider them :::gasp::: ugly! Well, spoiler alert: They are none of those things!

In Possums Are Not Cute!: And Other Myths about Nature’s Most Misunderstood Critter, wildlife rehabber and advocate Ally Burguieres aims to dispel the myths about opossums, specifically the Virginia Opossum, which is the only native marsupial in the United States. If you see a white and gray little beast with a pointy snout rifling through your garbage pails or eating the food you leave out in your yard for the feral cats, that’s the Virginia Opossum. And they are actually quite adorable … and harmless, too! They’re also here to stay, thankfully, because they happened to be very beneficial to our society, as this new full-color hardcover book delightfully explains.

Burguieres, who has rehabbed and released hundreds of orphaned or injured opossums, provides lots of fun facts about opossums; their history, anatomy, and behavior, and their importance in our society (they eat thousands of ticks a week!). There’s an entire section of Myth vs. Truth comparisons, along with information on how to be a “Possum Champion,” all accompanied by playful illustrations and plenty of photographic evidence from the author’s personal collection that prove just how darned cute these furry creatures really are.

Possums Are Not Cute! is undoubtedly both the most fun and informative book I’ve read all year. For years, I’ve been welcoming the local opossums to use my yard as a sanctuary, so I went into this book already knowing a lot about them, yet there was still much I learned. Humorous, motivational, and well-written, Possums Are Not Cute! is a quick, wonderful read for adults and perfect to show to children so they too can appreciate these misperceived, yet darling animals.

From the publisher:

Possums may steal your garbage…but with this book, they’ll also steal your heart!

Possums are more than the ugly-cute icons of the internet. These so-called trash animals and pointy kitties are not only relatable avatars for anxious but resilient people everywhere, but nature’s secret clean-up crew.

Organized around common myths that have given possums a bad reputation, this fun and offbeat book reveals the truth about possums through dozens of adorable photos, informative illustrations, and fascinating facts. Did you know that…

• Possums protect people and pets from disease! A single possum can eat up to 4,000 ticks per week!
• Possums excel at interspecies friendships, often sleeping in other animals’ dens.
• Possums are shy creatures: when they “play dead,” they are actually fainting from anxiety!

Written by wildlife rehabber and possum advocate Ally Burguieres, known for her popular Instagram account @ItsMeSesame, this accessible and giftable guide explains why possums deserve our admiration and offers tips on how we can protect and advocate for these magical marsupials.

Book Dimensions: 6.24 x 0.54 x 7.29 inches; 128 pages

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