We connect with animals on many levels, whether walking a dog, riding a horse, observing gorillas at the zoo, playing with a teddy bear as a child, or even simply watching them on TV and in movies. We call our sports teams Wolverines, Bobcats, Grizzlies, and Panthers. We can be gentle as a dove, fierce as a grizzly, or as agile as a cat. Some of us may even dream of being reborn as a different species. We typically accept these connections for what they are, taking for granted what is really a remarkable — and necessary — part of our existence. In Ask Now the Beasts, acclaimed nature writer Ruth Rudner explores the eternal and complicated connections between humans and animals. In a series of true stories about her own interactions and observations of some of the many animals that have crossed her path, she writes about the powerful ways that animals interact with us spiritually, activate our imaginations, and tie us to the ancient past. Moving between domestic and wild, Rudner finds meaning and appreciation for the way in which each animal exists fully in its own world — and how that world relates to ours.