I am spending a quarter of each year on the Haining International Campus of Zhejiang University, teaching in a joint Zhejiang/Edinburgh degree programme in Biomedical Sciences. A while ago, we were asked to provide suggestions for books to be added to the newly-to-be-established campus library. Of course, all the standard textbooks will be there, but it got me thinking about what other books I would consider valuable reads for budding biomedical scientists. And, more especially, what books I have enjoyed myself.
So here is a top ten list of my favourite vaguely biomedical-sciences-related beautiful reads. It is probably incomplete, not commented and not carefully curated, but I thought I’d throw it out there. Maybe you find something interesting.
Douglas Adams. Last chance to see.
J. Bogousslavsky, Francois Boller (eds.). Neurological disorders in famous artists.
Jorge Luis Borges. Ficciones.
Charles Darwin. The origin of species.
Douglas Hofstaedter. Goedel, Escher, Bach.
Helen Macdonald. H is for hawk.
Stephen Pinker. The language instinct.
Oliver Sacks The man who mistook his wife for a hat
Rebecca Skloot The immortal life of Henrietta Lacks
Edward Tufte The visual display of quantitative information