Virginia Morell is the author of "Ancestral Passions: The Leakey Family and the Quest for Humankind's Beginnings," a New York Times Notable Book of the Year; "Blue Nile"; and "Wildlife Wars" (with Richard Leakey). A correspondent for the journal Science, she is also a regular contributor to National Geographic Magazine and has written for The New York Times Magazine, Smithsonian, Discover, Conde Nast Traveler and numerous other publications. Her article "Minds of Their Own" (National Geographic, March 2008) was selected for "The Best American Science and Nature Writing, 2009." She is currrently writing a book about smart animals and the scientists who study them, to be published by Crown. She lives in Oregon with her husband and fellow writer, Michael McRae.