Not just another book on biotechnology and genetic engineering, this is the one that should be read first. Elkington has been there and still is involved in biotechnology issues (as director of Bioresources Ltd. and editor of Biotechnology Bulletin ), and he puts this experience to good use. He presents the successes and failures of the industry, companies, and products. Unlike Brian Stableford in Future Man ( LJ 1/85), he does not wildly predict the future of biotechnology. Instead, he realistically discusses what directions various companies are taking. The Gene Factor is written for the interested lay reader but is absorbing enough for the specialist to enjoy. Essential for anyone interested in the biotechnology field. Highly recommended. Kurt O. Baumgartner, International Minerals & Chemical Corp., Terre Haute, Ind.