Book cover of Extraordinary Insects: The Fabulous, Indispensable Creatures Who Run Our World by Anne Sverdrup-Thygeson
Biological Sciences

Extraordinary Insects: The Fabulous, Indispensable Creatures Who Run Our World

Insects comprise roughly half of the animal kingdom. They live everywhere—deep inside caves, 18,000 feet high in the Himalayas, inside computers, in Yellowstone’s hot springs, and in the ears and nostrils of much larger creatures. There are insects that have ears on their knees, eyes on their penises, and tongues under their feet. Most of us think life would be better without bugs. In fact, life would be impossible without them. […Learn More]

Book cover of Aroused: The History of Hormones and How They Control Just About Everything by Randhi Hutter Epstein
Biological Sciences

Aroused: The History of Hormones and How They Control Just About Everything

A guided tour through the strange science of hormones and the age-old quest to control them.

Metabolism, behavior, sleep, mood swings, the immune system, fighting, fleeing, puberty, and sex: these are just a few of the things our bodies control with hormones. Armed with a healthy dose of wit and curiosity, medical journalist Randi Hutter Epstein takes us on a journey through the unusual history of these potent chemicals from a basement filled with jarred nineteenth-century brains to a twenty-first-century hormone clinic in Los Angeles. […Learn More]

Book cover of Rise of the Necrofauna: The Science, Ethics, and Risks of De-Extinction by Britt Wray
Biological Sciences

Rise of the Necrofauna: The Science, Ethics, and Risks of De-Extinction

What happens when you try to recreate a woolly mammoth—fascinating science, or conservation catastrophe?

In Rise of the Necrofauna, Wray takes us deep into the minds and labs of some of the world’s most progressive thinkers to find out. She introduces us to renowned futurists like Stewart Brand and scientists like George Church, who are harnessing the powers of CRISPR gene editing in the hopes of “reviving” extinct passenger pigeons, woolly mammoths, and heath hens. […Learn More]

Book cover of Genetics in the Madhouse: The Unknown History of Human Heredity by Theodore M. Porter
Biological Sciences

Genetics in the Madhouse: The Unknown History of Human Heredity

The untold story of how hereditary data in mental hospitals gave rise to the science of human heredity

In the early 1800s, a century before there was any concept of the gene, physicians in insane asylums began to record causes of madness in their admission books. Almost from the beginning, they pointed to heredity as the most important of these causes. […Learn More]

Book cover of Breathless: The Scientific Race to Defeat a Deadly Virus by David Quammen
Biological Sciences

Breathless: The Scientific Race to Defeat a Deadly Virus

The story of the worldwide scientific quest to decipher the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, trace its source, and make possible the vaccines to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.

Breathless is the story of SARS-CoV-2 and its fierce journey through the human population, as seen by the scientists who study its origin, its ever-changing nature, and its capacity to kill us. […Learn More]

Book cover of A Taste for Poison: Eleven Deadly Molecules and the Killers Who Used Them by Neil Bradbury
Biography & Autobiography

A Taste for Poison: Eleven Deadly Molecules and the Killers Who Used Them

A brilliant blend of science and crime, A TASTE FOR POISON reveals how eleven notorious poisons affect the body–through the murders in which they were used.

As any reader of murder mysteries can tell you, poison is one of the most enduring—and popular—weapons of choice for a scheming murderer. It can be slipped into a drink, smeared onto the tip of an arrow or the handle of a door, even filtered through the air we breathe. But how exactly do these poisons work to break our bodies down, and what can we learn from the damage they inflict? […Learn More]