Dan Koeppel biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

Dan Koeppel

Dan Koeppel

Dan Koeppel Biography

Dan Koeppel is a well-known outdoors, nature, and adventure writer who has written for the New York Times Magazine, Outside, Audubon, Popular Science, and National Geographic Adventure, where he is a contributing editor. He has written two books: To See Every Bird on Earth and Banana: The Fate of the Fruit that Changed the World. Koeppel has also appeared on CNN and Good Morning America, and is a former commentator for Public Radio International's Marketplace.

Dan Koeppel's website

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Interview

Dan Koeppel, author of Banana: The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World, talks about all things bananas, including Banana Republics, the fruit's role in the Garden of Eden, the source of slipping on banana peel gags, and its current status as an endangered species.

What initially got you interested in writing about the Banana?

I read a small article in a science journal about an incurable disease that - even though the general public hadn’t heard of it - had the potential to destroy the world’s banana crop. I ended up with a magazine assignment, and wrote a story on the disease. I love bananas, and I couldn’t believe that they could disappear.


Is it true that the bananas we eat now are not the same as the bananas from fifty years ago?

That’s right. The banana our grandparents ate was a different - and most people say better tasting - breed called the Gros Michel. But that banana was wiped out by a variant of the blight, called Panama Disease, that now threatens our version of the fruit, called the Cavendish.


Is it really possible that the banana could one day be extinct?

The Cavendish banana was adopted because it was immune to Panama Disease. But bananas are generally very weak, because, like human identical twins, each one is an exact genetic duplicate of the other. What makes one banana sick makes all bananas sick. So if something really virulent comes along, it can be a huge problem.


What are Banana Republics? ...

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Books by this Author

Books by Dan Koeppel at BookBrowse
Banana jacket
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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Dan Koeppel but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
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  • Nicholas A. Basbanes

    Nicholas A. Basbanes

    Nicholas A. Basbanes is an award-winning investigative journalist and was literary editor of the Worcester Sunday Telegram. His articles have appeared in The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, and ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Banana

    Try:
    On Paper
    by Nicholas A. Basbanes

  • Barbara Freese

    Barbara Freese

    Barbara Freese is an Assistant Attorney General of Minnesota. She is known for her debut Coal: A Human History.

    Freese not only helped enforce her state's environmental laws but also became fascinated by the very substance ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Banana

    Try:
    Coal
    by Barbara Freese

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