Enzymes: A Very Short Introduction by Paul Engel
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Sometimes, a short, sharp, shock of science is what the body (and mind) needs.
What this is not:
A heavily popularized and humor-laden super-general introduction to enzymes, those wonderful little biological computers performing macros across nature.
What this is:
A general factual overview of enzymes with a few carefully selected examples (from food digestion to detergents for our laundry) with a fairly complete over-overview of the major scientific players in the field.
It doesn't go into any kind of serious detail except in the general layout of the molecular engines and how they were *mostly* accidentally discovered through plain curiosity and discovery, but it does point out that almost every huge breakthrough in genetics came hand-in-hand with enzymes.
Hell, even I knew that DNA and RNA can't cut or splice themselves without enzymes. :)
This is a perfect book for those of us not in the field who nonetheless have some knowledge OF the field. It isn't bogged down by interesting anecdotes or narratives, which, depending on your point of view, is either a Very Good Thing or a Very Disappointing Thing.
For me, I liked it. It's up-to-date, even out the is year, and it gets right to the point.
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