Local author Elizabeth Bernays to discuss new book "Six Legs Walking"

Elizabeth Bernays

Got a thing for bugs? If so, don’t miss meeting author Elizabeth Bernays as she talks about her new book at the Copper Queen Library at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 8.

Bernays, who lives in Tucson, is a world-traveler who has set down roots at the University of Arizona as a Regents’ Professor Emerita in Entomology and will talk about her book “Six Legs Walking: Notes from an Entomological Life,” published by Raised Voice Press.

In it, she shares her curiosity for all things on multiple legs as a child growing up in Queensland, Australia, particularly butterflies and their remarkable metamorphosis from tiny eggs to winged beauties.

She also shares her own metamorphosis in turning her curiosity into a career as an entomologist spanning decades and oceans. From a backwards child to accomplished biologist, she takes the reader through her life and her scientific work. She educates readers on the progression and significance of her biological research while sharing her sheer joy in the discoveries she makes.

Her career began in London, England, as a high school teacher and went on to earn her PhD in entomology from the University of London. She worked as a British government scientist and then landed in California at the University of California, Berkeley, as a professor of entomology. Six years later, she was appointed Regents’ Professor at the University of Arizona.

After retiring, Bernays joined the student body to earn a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing where she had taught. Her poems and essays have appeared in a variety of literary journals.

Local Bisbee author Ben Lamberton, author of “Chasing Arizona” and “Wilderness and the Razor Wire,” wrote of her book, “From her childhood in Australia and schooling in England to the wilds of Hungary, India, and Africa, Elizabeth Bernays asks the reader to become her entomological lab assistant, to suffer the tropical heat and grime and army ant bites of a true field researcher. “Six Legs Walking” is a fascinating, beautifully descriptive, and lyrical narrative that captures the essence of some strange agricultural pests and the exotic places where they dwell.”

Anyone who has marveled at a winged wonder escape from its chrysalis will be taken back to childhood days spent discovering nature’s creations.

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