is a book about work and about love, and the mountains that can be moved when those two things come together. It is told through Jahren's remarkable stories: about the discoveries she has made in her lab, as well as her struggle to get there; about her childhood playing in her father's laboratory; about how lab work became a sanctuary for both her heart and her hands; about Bill, the brilliant, wounded man who became her loyal colleague and best friend; about their field trips - sometimes authorised, sometimes very much not - that took them from the Midwest across the USA, to Norway and to Ireland, from the pale skies of North Pole to tropical Hawaii; and about her constant striving to do and be her best, and her unswerving dedication to her life's work.
Visceral, intimate, gloriously candid and sometimes extremely funny, Jahren's descriptions of her work, her intense relationship with the plants, seeds and soil she studies, and her insights on nature enliven every page of this thrilling book. In Lab Girl
, we see anew the complicated power of the natural world, and the power that can come from facing with bravery and conviction the challenge of discovering who you are. Her memoir, rich in feeling and in facts, is an ode to her profession and to the natural world * Time * [A] frank, illuminating and moving memoir . . . Hope's book casts a whole new light on the natural world * Hello * A fascinating account of plants, love and obsession * Mail on Sunday * Clear and compelling but also fiercely tender . . . Jahren refuses to pretend that scientists don't quite often come with more than their share of peculiarities. She captures so precisely the way they dress, talk, and occasionally misunderstand stuff that others take for granted . . . I love Jahren's enthusiasm for her work, an all-encompassing passion for which she won't apologise and which makes her indomitable -- Rachel Cooke * New Statesman * Lab Girl
is arguably a better motivator for a career in science than any mandatory curriculum * Discover * Jahren's literary bent renders dense material digestible, and lyrical . . . a gratifying and often moving chronicle of the scientist's life * Scotsman * This is an absolutely extraordinary book . . . By the end, I was babbling about it to complete strangers and determined to give a copy to just about everyone I know . . . Jahren is not just a scientist, though, but a poet who has given us insight into her mind and her passions, and I feel privileged to have been granted a glimpse * Times Higher Education Sup