One Renegade Cell
By Robert Weinberg
Review by Hannah F (Medical Sciences)
This was the first science book that I was able to read (and enjoy reading) all the way through. It’s basically about cancer, and takes you through what we know about cancer cells and their conversion from normal to diseased. To be honest, it feels more like you’re reading a story instead of some dense textbook, because even though the book itself isn’t that long, it takes you through all the relevant experiments in chronological order – the author makes you feel like you yourself are piecing together the information to deduce how tumours take hold. Not only did I enjoy reading it, I actually wanted to find out more about the subject when I’d finished.
Even though it is relatively old and we now know more about several of the fields discussed, it still provides a solid foundation for anyone interested in oncology and will allow you to read and understand more complex texts. If you’re interested in reading medicine at Oxford, the author is a really important figure in the world of cancer research – I didn’t realise quite how big a deal he is until we had to read a paper of his in preparation for a tutorial in molecular genetics. The style of writing is really easy to understand, and the writer uses some really accessible metaphors and examples to help underline his points. Overall, this book is a good introduction to scientific writing. It’s pretty easy to read and helps you learn a lot of the basics of cancer biology.
One Renegade Cell: The Quest for the Origins of Cancer by Robert Weinberg