In 1998 Thomas Hales dramatically announced the solution of a problem that has long teased eminent mathematicians: what is the densest possible arrangement of identical spheres? The Pursuit of Perfect Packing recounts the story of this problem and many others that have to do with packing things together. The examples are taken from mathematics, physics, biology, and engineering, including the arrangement of soap bubbles in foam, atoms in a crystal, the architecture of the bee's honeycomb, and the structure of the Giant's Causeway. Using an informal style and with key references, the book also includes brief accounts of the lives of many of the scientists who devoted themselves to problems of packing over many centuries, together with wry comments on their efforts. It is an entertaining introduction to the field for both specialists and the more general public.