Considered one of the greatest scientists in history, Gregor Mendel was the first person to map the characteristics of a living thing's successive generations, thus forming the foundation of modern genetic science. In Gregor Mendel, distinguished novelist and biologist Simon Mawer outlines Mendel's groundbreaking research and traces his intellectual legacy from his discoveries in the mid-19th century to the present.
In an engaging narrative enhanced by beautiful illustrations, Mawer details Mendel's life and work, from his experimentation with garden peas through his subsequent findings about heredity and genetic traits. Mawer also highlights the scientific work built on Mendel's breakthroughs, including the discovery of the DNA molecule by scientists Francis and Crick in the 1950s, the completion of the Human Genome Project in 2003, and the advances in genetics that continue today.
Simon Mawer is both a well-known novelist and a biologist. His historical novels include The Fall (2003), The Gospel of Judas (2000), and Mendel's Dwarf (1997). The son of a Royal Air Force pilot, Mawer spent his childhood in England, Cyprus and Malta. He attended university at Brasenose College in Oxford and earned his degree in biology. Following a brief tour of the Channel Islands, Scotland and Malta, Mawer settled in Italy. He now lives with his wife and two children in Rome, where he has spent the past twenty years teaching biology.