Reading List: Grunt author Mary Roach mines comedy out of awkwardness in 5 funny reads

With Reading List, The A.V. Club asks one of our favorite pop-culture creators to describe a list of reading materials that are tied together by a singular theme.

The reader: Mary Roach has carved out a vastly entertaining niche for herself as a chronicler of “curious” science, even though—as she told The A.V. Club in 2010—she’s “sort of a science goober.” In other words, she doesn’t come at her unconventional topics as an expert, but as someone with an open mind, a journalist’s eye for detail, and a historian’s gift for research. She also brings a comedian’s wit to her work, though some of the humor springs from the truly bizarre things she’s writing about.

Her past books include Stiff, a look at scientific experiments on cadavers; Bonk, on sex-based studies; Spook, on the science of the afterlife; and Packing …

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