Mendel’s Dwarf, by Simon Mawer Like his great-great uncle, the early geneticist Gregor Mendel, Dr. Benedict Lambert is struggling to unlock the secrets of heredity. But Benedict’s mission is particularly urgent and particularly personal, for he is afflicted with achondroplasia—he’s a dwarf. He’s also a man desperate for love. And when he finds it in the form of Jean—simple and shy—he stumbles upon an opportunity to correct the injustice of his own capricious genes.
Generosity: An Enhancement, by Richard Powers What will happen to life when science identifies the genetic basis of happiness? Who will own the patent? Do we dare revise our own temperaments? Funny, fast, and magical, Generosity celebrates both science and the freed imagination. In his most exuberant book yet, Richard Powers asks us to consider the big questions facing humankind as we begin to rewrite our own existence.
Long for this World, by Michael Byers Dr. Henry Moss is a dedicated geneticist who stumbles upon a possible cure for a disease that causes rapid aging and early death in children. Although his discovery may hold the key to eternal youth, exploiting it is an ethical minefield. Henry must make a painful choice: he can save the life of a critically ill boy he has grown to love—at the cost of his career—or he can sell his findings for a fortune to match the wealth of his dot-com-rich Seattle neighbors.
The Gold Bug Variations, by Richard Powers (also music) Stuart Ressler, a brilliant young molecular biologist, sets out in 1957 to crack the genetic code. His efforts are sidetracked by other, more intractable codes—social, moral, musical, spiritual—and he falls in love with a member of his research team. Years later, another young man and woman team up to investigate a different scientific mystery—why did the eminently promising Ressler suddenly disappear from the world of science?