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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: David O. Staats, MD (University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center)
Description: This is a single-authored discussion of aging, its causes, mechanisms, and implications, written for a lay public.
Purpose: Its purpose is to explain the mechanisms of aging and to dispel exaggerated claims of anti-aging medicine. These are worthy objectives and the book meets them all in style.
Audience: The book is written for a lay audience. The author is one of the world's experts in aging and achieves a masterful synthesis in this book.
Features: This is a lay distillation of the author's Understanding Ageing (Cambridge University Press, 1995), with added thoughtful editorial comments. The broad extensive knowledge of this author is plainly evident in this pleasurable compact book. Explanations of why and how we age, the nature of aging in the biological kingdom, and the false hopes of anti-aging medicine are woven into a coherent, easily digestible form. There is a very well annotated list of references and a helpful glossary. The elegant British style of biological writing evident here makes this book a particular pleasure to read.
Assessment: For those working in the field of aging without an extensive biomedical background, this is a really excellent read.