Description - What Mad Pursuit by Francis Crick
Candid, provocative, and disarming, this is the widely-praised memoir of the co-discoverer of the double helix of DNA.
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(203mm x 127mm x 13mm)
Publisher: The Perseus Books Group
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Book Reviews - What Mad Pursuit by Francis Crick
US Kirkus Review »
In this case, lightning didn't strike twice. James Watson's The Double Helix is a classic of popular science writing, a masterful telling of the discovery of DNA's double helix; here, Watson's co-discoverer (and co-winner of the Nobel Prize) dredges up a tangled account of the same triumph along with a labored overview of his life and career. Crick resolved as a young man to explore "the borderline between the living and the nonliving, and the workings of the brain" - all part of his wish to obtain rock-hard knowledge of the universe in place of the rejected Christian faith of his childhood. Scouting the borderline, he stumbled upon world-wide fame; thirty years later, he now probes the basic structures of the brain. Remarkable stuff, but Crick fails to bring much drama to his account. His colleagues, despite some wacky anecdotes (one tells of a scientific giant who, missing his country cabbage patch, liked to hire himself out as a city gardener once a week) don't take on much life of their own - they exist here as aspects of Crick's own career. No problem, if Crick's struggles had apparent drama or flair. But his daily struggles - carving a niche in the scientific community, puzzling out esoteric problems in molecular biology - won't grab many nonscientists, especially as Crick spells out each advance in overwhelming detail. Not bad - just mighty dull for those without a passionate interest in things molecular. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Francis Crick
Francis Crick is the Kieckhefer Professor at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California. He shared a Nobel Prize with James Watson and Maurice Wilkins in 1962 for the discovery of the structure of DNA, regarded as the greatest biological advance of the twentieth century.