By Julia Seaver
Date of Publication: 2016
Author: Hope Jahren
Number of Pages: 304
Favorite character: Bill. He is witty, bitter, and is a no-nonsense type of person.
Themes: Perseverance, coming to age, and mental illness
Why should people read it?-It’s a truly inspirational tale with beautiful writing and characters with a lot of depth. You also learn a lot about science, but it’s not boring because Jahren writes with such tenderness and an almost poetic tone. I felt different about myself after finishing this book.
Lab Girl by Hope Jahren cannot be missed. This beautiful story, written in an almost poetic tone, is guaranteed to make you laugh, cry, and think about your place on this earth. Lab Girl follows the life of Hope Jahren as she grows up, goes to college, gets multiple degrees, and goes on nearly unbelievable adventures. Who would’ve known a Geobiologist would have that much fun, and also get into that much trouble with the T.S.A.? This book alternates between chapters documenting J
ahren’s life and chapters of short, fascinating explanations of how plants work. This might sound boring, but Jahren describes the inner workings of trees and grass with such a loving, tender tone that it’s impossible not to be immediately captivated. At some points, the way Jahren writes would make you sense that she thinks plants have emotions, which people might agree with at the end of the book. Very important parts of Lab Girl are relationships. Hope has relationships with her father, her mother, her son, her husband, and mostly, Bill. Bill is a man whom Hope met in college, and he is almost too much of a character to be true. He has lived in a van, in Hope’s attic, in a hole in his parent’s backyard, and in an office in the college. Bill always has the wittiest, most sarcastic comebacks and once he, Hope, and a van full of college students drove 3,000 miles, across the United States, in only four days. This book informs and inspires about science, life, and the impact one person can make on the world. A strong recommendation for advanced readers, as there is some disturbing content.