Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Abraham Lincoln's DNA and Other Adventures in Genetics” as Want to Read:
Abraham Lincoln's DNA and Other Adventures in Genetics
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Abraham Lincoln's DNA and Other Adventures in Genetics

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  113 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
Twenty-four true, wide-ranging tales of crime, history, human behaviour, illness and ethics, told from the personal perspective of an eminent physician-lawyer. Philip Reilly uses these stories to illustrate the principles of human genetics and the wider issues.
Unknown Binding, 339 pages
Published September 10th 2007 by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press (first published August 28th 2000)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

Be the first to ask a question about Abraham Lincoln's DNA and Other Adventures in Genetics

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
I'd recommend Abraham Lincoln’s DNA to any person interested in genetics and DNA, and especially to introductory biology students. It provides a broad overview on applied research in biotechnology and current technologies and methods used in genetics. I loved the organization of the book, which allows the reader to closely examine the areas that interests them most. For me, the most interesting chapters were the discussion on property rights and privacy of genetic information, and the burden of ...more
Feb 12, 2013 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Science fans
Recommended to Joan by: Rebecca Bartlett
This started out as fascinating. It began to drag and I also found myself disagreeing with some of the author's opinions, often given more or less as fact. I don't consider animals a wise choice for science experiments. For example, I just read today that they have found that mice do not react the same way humans do I think in lung and skin experiments, so labwork that has been based on those specific studies are at best iffy, most likely, invalid. There were other comments he made that bothered ...more
Sep 29, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting to consider how world history may have been shaped by genetics.
Sep 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I read this book back in 2004, I was absolutely enamored. The cases, the stories, the science, the bioethics, the controversy, absolutely fascinating. At that time I was a junior in high school, and it was recommended to me by my adv. bio teacher. Genetics, from that point on, was a passion of mine. I went on to study it in college, as well as public health, and now I find myself asking some of the same questions at my job that Dr. Reilly posed in this book, now almost a decade on. I would ...more
Jun 24, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The stories are a bit hit or miss. Applications to historical studies and legal overviews are quite interesting, but by the time the book comes around to discussion of GMOs, it becomes a little didactic. There's little-to-no recognition that there may be a shred of validity to concerns from environmentalists or bioethicists about rapid, un-regulated commercial applications of genetic research to the food supply.
Jan 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great introduction for those interested in genetics as it provides definitions of scientific terms and traces the history of genetics. The story tells very interesting cases, most notably Abraham Lincoln, to understand the problems that can arise within the field of genetics. There is also a focus on the technology at the time available when the author wrote this. It is a bit dated, but I still would recommend for an introduction to genetics.
Aug 20, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
it was okay. The history aspect of the book was very interesting, however a lot of the questions the author posed remained unresolved. Also being that this book is 10 years old, all of the author's speculations don't really hold up. Also some of the technology is missing due to age, but that is part of what makes it a good science history book.
Sep 22, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone with the least of interest in genetics and medicine
Recommended to Merna by: My Biology teacher
Shelves: fascinating
I've never read a medical book on this level of entertainment. It was educational, well informative,extremely interesting, diverse, fascinating, and incredibly wonderful. Every minute I spent reading this book was a minute well spent.
Jul 18, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting, if you like this kind of stuff.
Aug 13, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Didn't finish.
Aug 31, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Ann Arbor Reads book
Nov 11, 2013 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Michigan Avenue Library Nonfiction 599.935 Rei On shelf
Whittaker Rd too
Tiffany Swenson
Jan 17, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great book! I liked the case study format.
Shane Peyton
rated it liked it
Feb 11, 2015
Elizabeth Meyer
rated it liked it
Jan 08, 2016
rated it liked it
Jan 03, 2008
rated it really liked it
Aug 16, 2012
rated it liked it
May 24, 2008
rated it it was amazing
Sep 04, 2013
Michael Grande
rated it liked it
Oct 24, 2011
rated it really liked it
Jan 01, 2016
Jillian Logsdon
rated it really liked it
Jan 25, 2016
Paul Kitchen
rated it really liked it
Jul 18, 2011
rated it really liked it
Jul 08, 2013
rated it really liked it
Jun 16, 2014
Jon Raymond
rated it it was ok
Jul 07, 2011
rated it liked it
Apr 10, 2012
rated it really liked it
Mar 07, 2014
rated it it was ok
Oct 22, 2009
rated it it was amazing
Aug 09, 2008
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Trace Your Roots with DNA: Using Genetic Tests to Explore Your Family Tree
  • The Language of Life: DNA and the Revolution in Personalized Medicine
  • The Future of the Brain: The Promise & Perils of Tomorrow's Neuroscience
  • They Came in Ships: A Guide to Finding Your Immigrant Ancestor's Arrival Record
  • Bioinformatics For Dummies
  • The Genetic Strand: Exploring a Family History Through DNA
  • How the Leopard Changed Its Spots: The Evolution of Complexity
  • Control Theory: A New Explanation of How We Control Our Lives
  • Why We Hurt: The Natural History of Pain
  • The Human Career: Human Biological and Cultural Origins
  • The Family Tree Problem Solver: Proven Methods for Scaling the Inevitable Brick Wall
  • The Dialectical Biologist
  • The Computational Brain
  • Genetics For Dummies
  • A Short Guide to Writing About Biology
  • Bright Air, Brilliant Fire: On The Matter Of The Mind
  • Present at the Future: From Evolution to Nanotechnology, Candid and Controversial Conversations on Science and Nature
  • The First Idea: How Symbols, Language, and Intelligence Evolved from Our Primate Ancestors to Modern Humans