The Vital Question

Energy, Evolution, and the Origins of Complex Life

Recommended by Bill Gates, and 1 others. See all reviews

Ranked #7 in Biochemistry, Ranked #20 in Molecular Biologysee more rankings.

To explain the mystery of how life evolved on Earth, Nick Lane explores the deep link between energy and genes.

The Earth teems with life: in its oceans, forests, skies and cities. Yet there’s a black hole at the heart of biology. We do not know why complex life is the way it is, or, for that matter, how life first began. In The Vital Question, award-winning author and biochemist Nick Lane radically reframes evolutionary history, putting forward a solution to conundrums that have puzzled generations of scientists.

For two and a half billion years, from the very origins...


Reviews and Recommendations

We've comprehensively compiled reviews of The Vital Question from the world's leading experts.

Bill Gates CEO/MicrosoftNick is one of those original thinkers who makes you say: More people should know about this guy's work. He is trying to right a scientific wrong by getting people to fully appreciate the role that energy plays in all living things. Even if the details of Nick's work turn out to be wrong, I suspect his focus on energy will be seen as an important contribution to our understanding of where we come from. (Source)

Rankings by Category

The Vital Question is ranked in the following categories:

Similar Books

If you like The Vital Question, check out these similar top-rated books:

Learn: What makes Shortform summaries the best in the world?