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 The Genesis Machine: Our Quest to Rewrite Life in the Age of Synthetic Biology by Amy Webb
Biological Sciences

The Genesis Machine: Our Quest to Rewrite Life in the Age of Synthetic Biology

The next frontier in technology is inside our own bodies.

Synthetic biology will revolutionize how we define family, how we identify disease and treat aging, where we make our homes, and how we nourish ourselves. This fast-growing field—which uses computers to modify or rewrite genetic code—has created revolutionary, groundbreaking solutions such as the mRNA COVID vaccines, IVF, and lab-grown hamburger that tastes like the real thing. […Learn More]

Book cover of How to Tame a Fox (and Build a Dog): Visionary Scientists and a Siberian Tale of Jump-Started Evolution by Lee Alan Dugatkin
Biological Sciences

How to Tame a Fox (and Build a Dog): Visionary Scientists and a Siberian Tale of Jump-Started Evolution

Tucked away in Siberia, there are furry, four-legged creatures with wagging tails and floppy ears that are as docile and friendly as any lapdog. But, despite appearances, these are not dogs—they are foxes. They are the result of the most astonishing experiment in breeding ever undertaken—imagine speeding up thousands of years of evolution into a few decades. In 1959, biologists Dmitri Belyaev and Lyudmila Trut set out to do just that, by starting with a few dozen silver foxes from fox farms in the USSR and attempting to recreate the evolution of wolves into dogs in real time in order to witness the process of domestication. […Learn More]

Book cover of Nerve: Adventures in the Science of Fear by Eva Holland
Biological Sciences

Nerve: Adventures in the Science of Fear 

Since childhood, Eva Holland has been gripped by two debilitating phobias: fear of losing her mother and fear of heights. The worst comes to pass with her mother’s sudden death in 2015, and something shifts for Eva. Then, when an ice-climbing expedition ends with Eva embarrassed and in tears, a new resolve kicks in: Fear may define her past, but it won’t decide her future! […Learn More]

Book cover of Why?: What Makes Us Curious by Mario Livio
Biological Sciences

Why?: What Makes Us Curious

Astrophysicist and author Mario Livio investigates perhaps the most human of all our characteristics—curiosity—in this “lively, expert, and definitely not dumbed-down account” (Kirkus Reviews) as he explores our innate desire to know why.

Experiments demonstrate that people are more distracted when they overhear a phone conversation—where they can know only one side of the dialogue—than when they overhear two people talking and know both sides. Why does half a conversation make us more curious than a whole conversation? […Learn More]

Book cover of Galileo: And the Science Deniers by Mario Livio
Biography & Autobiography

Galileo: And the Science Deniers

A fresh interpretation of the life of Galileo Galilei, one of history’s greatest and most fascinating scientists, that sheds new light on his discoveries and how he was challenged by science deniers. “We really need this story now, because we’re living through the next chapter of science denial” (Bill McKibben). […Learn More]

Book cover of Tree Story: The History of the World Written in Rings by Valerie Trouet
Biological Sciences

Tree Story: The History of the World Written in Rings

People across the world know that to tell how old a tree is, you count its rings. Few people, however, know that research into tree rings has also made amazing contributions to our understanding of Earth’s climate history and its influences on human civilization over the past 2,000 years. In her captivating book Tree Story, Valerie Trouet reveals how the seemingly simple and relatively familiar concept of counting tree rings has inspired far-reaching scientific breakthroughs that illuminate the complex interactions between nature and people. […Learn More]