Please take a moment to review Hachette Book Group's updated Privacy Policy: read the updated policy here.

The Tiger

The Tiger

It’s December 1997, and a man-eating tiger is on the prowl outside a remote village in Russia’s Far East. The tiger isn’t just killing people, it’s annihilating them, and a team of men and their dogs must hunt it on foot through the forest in the brutal cold. As the trackers sift through the gruesome remains of the victims, they discover that these attacks aren’t random: the tiger is apparently engaged in a vendetta. Injured, starving, and extremely dangerous, the tiger must be found before it strikes again. As he re-creates these extraordinary events, John Vaillant gives us an unforgettable portrait of this spectacularly beautiful and mysterious region. We meet the native tribes who for centuries have worshipped and lived alongside tigers, even sharing their kills with them. We witness the arrival of Russian settlers in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, soldiers and hunters who greatly diminished the tiger populations. And we come to know their descendants, who, crushed by poverty, have turned to poaching and further upset the natural balance of the region. This ancient, tenuous relationship between man and predator is at the very heart of this remarkable book. Throughout we encounter surprising theories of how humans and tigers may have evolved to coexist, how we may have developed as scavengers rather than hunters, and how early Homo sapiens may have fit seamlessly into the tiger’s ecosystem. Above all, we come to understand the endangered Siberian tiger, a highly intelligent super-predator that can grow to ten feet long, weigh more than six hundred pounds, and range daily over vast territories of forest and mountain. Beautifully written and deeply informative, The Tiger circles around three main characters: Vladimir Markov, a poacher killed by the tiger; Yuri Trush, the lead tracker; and the tiger himself. It is an absolutely gripping tale of man and nature that leads inexorably to a final showdown in a clearing deep in the taiga.
Read More

Genre: Society & Social Sciences / Society & Culture: General / Social Issues & Processes / Animals & Society

On Sale: 24th August 2010

Price: £10.99

ISBN-13: 9781848946897

Reviews

Writing in a vigorous, evocative style . . . Vaillant paints a haunting portrait of man's vexed relationship with nature.
<i>Publishers Weekly</i>
a remarkable story, exceptionally well told.
<i>Financial Times</i>
instant classic
<i>Calgary Herald</i>
Breathtakingly exciting
<i>Vancouver Sun</i>
A hair-raising tale in which conservation, madness and even murder collide.
<i>Montreal Gazette</i>
Riveting
<i>Washington Post</i>
The Tiger is the sort of book I very much like and rarely find. Humans are hard-wired to fear tigers, so this book will attract intense interest.
Annie Proulx
Enthralling
<i>Christian Science Monitor</i>
By all means read Vaillant's magnificent book about the animal: The Tiger offers readers a shiver-inducing portrait of a predator that has been revered - and feared - like no other animal.
<i>San Francisco Chronicle</i>
This book must be read by everybody who is interested in the conservation of wildlife. It takes you to the Russian wilderness to meet face-to-face with the Siberian tiger.
Temple Grandin, author of <i>Animals in Translation</i>
'A personal favourite of mine, an extraordinary account of a tracker on the trail of a Siberian man-eating tiger in 1997. Along the way we get a load of tiger facts and a beautiful portrait of a forbidding region. It is a stunning, lovely, lovely book.'
<i>Bookseller</i>
Not so incidentally, if ever a nonfiction author has used the techniques of fiction any better to recount a real-life narrative, it is difficult to imagine who that author would be.
<i>Seattle Times</i>
'John Vaillant is a literary shaman.'
<i>Quill & Quire</i>
fascinating and compelling plot
<i>Ottawa Citizen</i>
'Brad Pitt has bought the movie rights to "The Tiger," but with all due respect to Mr. Pitt, there's no way the movie will match Mr. Vaillant's book.'
<i>Washington Times</i>
Overall, this is a superb book -- hyper-intelligent, wonderfully well-written, with a great cast, both human and animal, and at its heart, the amazing and truly chilling story of one tiger's winter campaign of murderous revenge.
<i>Daily Mail</i>
An absolutely superb book.
George Schaller, Wildlife Conservation Society & Panthera
'affectionate account'
<i>Times Literary Supplement</i>
A masterpiece
<i>Outside</i>
'astoundingly gripping'
<i>Toronto Star</i>
'This masterful account of the terror, death and grief caused by a man-eating Amur tiger in Russia in 1997 is as mesmerising, rangy and relentless as the creature in question.'
<Sunday Telegraph</i>
'This is an altogether different kind of manhunt story . . . . The pursuit culminates in a breathtaking stand-off of man versus cat in a forest clearing - a denouement every bit as explosive and surprising as the raid in Abbottabad earlier this week.'
Hampton Sides, <i>Wall Street Journal</i>
'Enriched by sparkling sidetracks into nature and history, this enthralling true-crime narrative takes us on a snowbound search not only for a beast but for a motive. Like its superb quarry, Vaillant's book moves with grace and stealth, covers a vast terrain and shakes the observer's soul'
<i>Independent</i>
'part natural history, part Russian history and part thriller; it tells a gripping and gory story of what it's like to stalk - and be stalked by - the largest species of cat still walking the Earth.'
National Public Radio (USA)
Brilliant
<i>US Library Journal</i>
'The structure of Vaillant's nonfiction hunting tale echoes that of "Moby-Dick," alternating a gripping chase narrative -- the search, in the late 1990s, for a man-eating Amur tiger in the Primorye region, on Russia's far eastern border -- with dense explanations of the culture and ecology surrounding the chase.'
<i>New York Times</i>
'This masterful account of the terror, death and grief caused by a man-eating Amur tiger in Russia in 1997 is as mesmerising, rangy and relentless as the creature in question.'
<i>Sunday Telegraph</i>
'The Tiger takes us on a journey to the raw edge of civilization, to a world of vengeful cats and venal men, a world that, in Vaillant's brilliant telling, is simultaneously haunting and enchanting.'
Hampton Sides, author of <i>Ghost Soldiers</i>
'Few writers have taken such pains to understand their monsters, and few depict them in such arresting prose.'
<i>New York Times Book Review</i>
read this fine, true book in the warmth, beside the flicker of firelight. Read it and be afraid. Be very afraid.
Simon Winchester, <i>Globe and Mail</i>
'extraordinary ... a brilliantly told tale of man and nature'
Tim Flannery, <i>New York Review of Books</i>
'The Tiger also counts as a supreme example of true-crime writing driven by wide-angle empathy and compassion. Some readers may choose to shelve it, not among cosy wildlife yarns, but with Truman Capote's In Cold Blood.'
Boyd Tonkin, <i>Independent</i>