Mary Roach is an American science writer. She has published three books: Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers (2003), Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife (2005) and Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex (2008). Raised in Etna, New Hampshire, she holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from Wesleyan University and currently resides in San Francisco, California.
She began her writing career at the San Francisco Zoological Society, producing press releases on such topics as elephant wart surgery. In 1986, she sold a humor piece about the IRS to the San Francisco Chronicle. That led to a spate of humorous first-person essays for such publications as Sports Illustrated, Vogue, The New York Times Magazine, Discover, Outside, Reader's Digest (for whom she wrote a monthly humor column) and GQ.
She appeared on The Colbert Report, a satirical news program, in November 2005.