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Customer Review

23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good balance of science and story, May 26, 2008
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This review is from: Microcosm: E. coli and the New Science of Life (Hardcover)
It would have been easy to make this book very dry, and the author did an excellent job of balancing scientific detail with a good narrative. It includes just enough components of history and science to be complete without over-doing either area.

The author takes us from the isolation of E. coli in 1885 to, for example, current debates over how some mutations help bacteria survive environmental stress. Between these two benchmarks the author weaves a well-written story that covers what is known about E. coli and other bacteria. More importantly, he also explains why we know what we know. Of perhaps the greatest worth is the book's coverage of why natural selection is such an important scientific concept, using drug resistance as one of many examples.

A nice read for either the interested layperson or the professional.
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