Caroline Van Hemert, author of The Sun is a Compass, is a lifelong Alaskan with a scientist’s eye and an adventurer’s penchant for pushing limits. Her journeys, both personal and professional, have taken her from the pack ice of the Arctic Ocean to the swamps of the Okavango Delta. Along the way, she has been outsmarted by Cheeto-eating crows, stalked by predatory bears, charged by elephants, and humbled by 10-gram chickadees that shiver through winter nights at 40 degrees below zero.
Caroline holds a Ph.D. in wildlife biology and an M.A. in creative writing and currently works as a research biologist for the USGS Alaska Science Center. She regularly publishes and speaks about her scientific research, which has been featured in the New York Times, National Geographic, Birding, and Scientific American. With her husband and two young sons, she divides her time between a cozy home in downtown Anchorage and a remote, off-the-grid cabin near Haines, Alaska.