The Editorial in the July issue of Nature Methods is the journal’s popular annual round up of summer reading (Nat. Meth. 6, 471; 2009). According to the Editorial, for those who look hard enough there are a few good fiction books to be found with refreshingly realistic biologists as central characters in laboratory settings. A mix of the old and the new follows, including brief accounts of Cantor’s Dilemma by Carl Djerassi; Intuition by Allegra Goodman; Long for this World by Michael Byers; Arrowsmith by Sinclair Lewis; Experimental Heart by Jennifer Rohn; and Mendel’s Dwarf by Simon Mawer.
At the journal’s Methagora blog, Allison Doerr emphasizes one benefit of science-in-fiction: as a “medium for overturning stereotypes about scientists, and for getting more people interested in science and for educating them about what scientists do.” Comments and suggestions of good science-in-fiction from readers are welcome at Methagora.