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Top Science Book – Life Ascending: Ten Great Inventions of Evolution by Nick Lane


Life Ascending: the ten great inventions of evolution by Nick Lane was recently awarded 2010 Royal Society Prize for Science Books. This prestigious UK society is the oldest such group in the world and has been recognizing excellence in science writing since 1988.

Nick Lane said: “I’ve been following the prize since its inception and I know it’s the highlight of the year for many scientists. The prize stands for getting the best science to the widest audience possible and I hope that it attracts funding next year and continues for as long as possible.

Maggie Philbin, Chair of the Judges said: “Life Ascending is a beautifully written and elegantly structured book that was a favourite with all of the judges. Nick Lane hasn’t been afraid to challenge us with some tough science, explaining it in such a way that we feel like scientists ourselves, unfolding the mysteries of life. Science writing shouldn’t patronise readers, it should help them to develop their scientific thinking and apply it to the world around them, something exemplified by this wonderful and engaging book.”

Also among the nominated this year were:

Why Does E=MC2?: and why should we care?,
by Brian Cox and Jeff Forshaw;

A World Without Ice,
by Henry Pollack;

God’s Philosophers: how the medieval world laid the foundations of modern science

by James Hannam

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