Biology

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Pamela S. Turner and photographs by Scott Tuason

What woman hasn't said to her husband: "You should just feel the pain of giving birth!" In this book, Turner describes how the male seahorse's brood pouch bulges like a balloon: "It puffs in and out, in and out, like the cheeks of a trumpet player. The seahorse pumps with his tail, bending and folding like a jackknife, working hard to give birth ... The mother seahorse waits nearby. She does nothing to help the father or the babies." The book does have beautiful pictures of sea horses and their neighbors throughout.

Victor McElheny

This is the story of the Human Genome Project from its origins, through the race to order the three billion subunits of DNA, to the surprises emerging as scientists seek to exploit the molecule of heredity. Based on years of original interviews and reporting in the inner circles of biological science, "Drawing the Map of Life" is the first account to deal in depth with the intellectual roots of the project, the motivations that drove it, and the hype that often masked genuine triumphs.

Greg Graffin and Steve Olson

First author Greg Graffin, received his Ph.D. from Cornell and teaches evolutionary biology at UCLA. He is also the co-founder and lead singer of the punk band Bad Religion. Together with co-author Olson, they've produced a work that is partly a science book about evolutionary biology (the limits of natural selection in guiding evolutionary change) and partly a memoir about Graffin's 30 years in music and science.

Amy S. Hansen

Hansen, a Maryland freelance specializing in science writing for children, wrote this book (for ages 4 to 8) because: "When I was young, bugs seemed magical. They'd be buzzing around all summer, and then as it got cold, they'd disappear. Where did they go? And how did they get back to my yard in the spring? Years later my kids asked the same questions, and I decided to find out."

Jon Cohen

In 2005, researchers cracked the code of the chimpanzee genome, providing a window into the differences between humans and our closest primate cousins. Science correspondent Jon Cohen has been following the DNA hunt, as well as new studies in ape communication, human evolution, disease, and diet. In Almost Chimpanzee, Cohen takes readers on a scientific journey behind the scenes in cutting-edge genetics labs, rain forests in Uganda, sanctuaries in Iowa, experimental enclaves in Japan, and even the Detroit Zoo.

Judith Horstman and Scientific American

Written and edited by Horstman, a Sacramento, Calif. freelance, the book is based upon the newest research and articles from Scientific American and Scientific American Mind magazines. It describes the how advances in neuroscience are bringing amazing treatments and startling predictions of what we can expect to both better and boost our brains.

Malcolm Potts and Thomas Hayden

Potts, an obstetrician and USC research scientist, and San Francisco freelance Hayden examine the biological origins of organized violence, tracing its development from ancient raids and battles to modern warfare and terrorism. Potts and Hayden relay that understanding war as part of humanity

Malcolm Potts and Thomas Hayden

Combining exhaustive research and rich personal experience, Sex and War shows that war, terrorism, slavery, and the subjugation of women have common roots deep in our biological history. Evolution is not destiny, however, and the authors, with the crucial contributions of Martha Campbell, show how relatively simple strategies can help the biology of peace win out over the biology of war. In doing so, they lay out a rational roadmap to make war less likely in the future, and less brutal when it does occur.