The best books about scientific research or genetic-engineering on humans or animals

Why am I passionate about this?

I have an educational background in geological sciences and hence a strong interest in scientific research, particularly the incredible discoveries and stunning advancements that often come from it. I’ve always done my best to dig deep into the many problems and obstacles that arise in attempting to expand the collective scientific knowledge of mankind, fictionally and otherwise. As a result, my book list shows people and situations at the edges of scientific research which is inherently unknown and, therefore, as thrilling as it is terrifying by its very nature. Not only in terms of the process of doing something without any set rules but also with regard to potential outcomes.  

I wrote...

The Superspecies

By Gordon Byron,

Book cover of The Superspecies

What is my book about?

A young girl is brutally abducted by a bloodthirsty grizzly, forcing a group of scientists to mop up a genetic engineering operation that threatens any and all who enter the woods. One question remains: are the animals really dangerous for no reason at all or does their genetically-enhanced intelligence simply make them recognize something damning about human nature that must be recognized before it's too late? Harmonious coexistence with an emergent species or total destruction of humans and animals alike? Those are the options now.

Two groups of scientific researchers are sent to where bear attacks are frequent, only to find themselves attacked and outsmarted completely. Locking them in an impasse and unable to resolve their differences, leading to ever-increasing tension, animosity, kidnapping, and murder.

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of Brave New World

Gordon Byron Why did I love this book?

Brave New World is both frightening and enticing at the same time. It confronts the reader with a perfectly managed society that is orderly and fine-tuned in so many ways so as to give a perfect superficial paradise-like veneer. The only problem is that when you look more closely at it as the “savage” did with the woman who is so willing to give up her body so freely to him, it’s cheap, inhuman, and hollow to the core. The society has no human value or substance.

By Aldous Huxley,

Why should I read it?

20 authors picked Brave New World as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

**One of the BBC's 100 Novels That Shaped Our World**

EVERYONE BELONGS TO EVERYONE ELSE. Read the dystopian classic that inspired the hit Sky TV series.

'A masterpiece of speculation... As vibrant, fresh, and somehow shocking as it was when I first read it' Margaret Atwood, bestselling author of The Handmaid's Tale.

Welcome to New London. Everybody is happy here. Our perfect society achieved peace and stability through the prohibition of monogamy, privacy, money, family and history itself. Now everyone belongs.

You can be happy too. All you need to do is take your Soma pills.

Discover the brave new…

Book cover of The Island of Doctor Moreau

Gordon Byron Why did I love this book?

This book gives a great example of what happens when humans try too hard to tinker with nature. Of course, sometimes science does need to tinker with nature for the greater good of humanity and scientific progress but this story is disturbing on many levels because it touches upon various aspects of human responsibility with regard to nature. Mainly on the philosophical and moral levels relating to how much power humans should ultimately wield over nature and what benefits or drawbacks are derived from such control. Obviously, humans can alter nature at a cost but what happens when we do, and what is the potential fallout from meddling with nature?

By H.G. Wells,

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked The Island of Doctor Moreau as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Island of Doctor Moreau has inspired countless homages in literature, film and television.

Book cover of Frankenstein

Gordon Byron Why did I love this book?

This book is ideal for people who like to explore the dark side of scientific obsession devoid of context and the unexpected negative effects of research without any restraint or concern for the consequences in the shadowy figure of Dr. Moreau. One of the most intriguing villains in literary history in my view. When science pursues goals without any concern for how it affects the entire scope of persons involved or the wider field of influence around it, disastrous things can happen no one can predict. That being said, there is a lot of unknowns in pursuing cutting-edge research which cannot be determined beforehand and I feel this novel deals with that adequately too.

By Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley,

Why should I read it?

41 authors picked Frankenstein as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of the BBC's '100 Novels That Shaped Our World'

'That rare story to pass from literature into myth' The New York Times

Mary Shelley's chilling Gothic tale was conceived when she was only eighteen, living with her lover Percy Shelley on Lake Geneva. The story of Victor Frankenstein who, obsessed with creating life itself, plunders graveyards for the material to fashion a new being, but whose botched creature sets out to destroy his maker, would become the world's most famous work of horror fiction, and remains a devastating exploration of the limits of human creativity. Based on the third…

Book cover of Arrowsmith

Gordon Byron Why did I love this book?

This book has always been one of my all-time favorites because I love the clarity of Lewis’ writing and it deals with the real-world challenges faced by scientists in general and medical doctors in particular. The moral, financial, and romantic dilemmas faced by Martin Arrowsmith constantly keep my teeth on edge as I read this book, never leaving me starved for excitement or something unexpected at every turn. I love how Martin personally transforms throughout the novel and deals in various ways with the emotional challenges of different types of romantic relationships as he faces the obstacles within his career that ultimately shape his internal moral fiber. 

By Sinclair Lewis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Arrowsmith as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Martin Arrowsmith, brilliant but licentious, makes his way from his small Midwest town to New York City. Getting his start at medical school, Martin sets out on a series of affairs, bouncing from woman to woman and job to job, hungry to satisfy his desires as both a man and a man of science. Just as it appears he'll be able to settle down, he finds himself back among the scientific elite and faced with a discovery that can change his life.

Written in conjunction with science writer Paul de Kruif, Arrowsmith is one of the first books to address…

Book cover of Heart of Darkness

Gordon Byron Why did I love this book?

The atmosphere of this book is downright spooky and mysterious from cover to cover, which is one thing I really love about it. Conrad masterfully unravels the dark tone of the novel with a heavy dose of foreboding till the very end, working its literary lather throughout the fabric of the story like someone creeping up on you from behind as you watch a scary movie. It’s not technically a scientific book per se other than delving deep into the recesses of the dark side of human nature and deviant psychology with regard to Kurtz’s madness. But, on that basis alone, this novel excels more than most (if not all) in terms of measured suspense.

By Joseph Conrad,

Why should I read it?

13 authors picked Heart of Darkness as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Although Polish by birth, Joseph Conrad (1857–1924) is regarded as one of the greatest writers in English, and Heart of Darkness, first published in 1902, is considered by many his "most famous, finest, and most enigmatic story." — Encyclopaedia Britannica. The tale concerns the journey of the narrator (Marlow) up the Congo River on behalf of a Belgian trading company. Far upriver, he encounters the mysterious Kurtz, an ivory trader who exercises an almost godlike sway over the inhabitants of the region. Both repelled and fascinated by the man, Marlow is brought face to face with the corruption and despair…

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Lightning Strike Blues

By Gayleen Froese,

Book cover of Lightning Strike Blues

Gayleen Froese Author Of Lightning Strike Blues

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

Author Communications officer Singer-songwriter Fan of all animals Role-playing geek Nature photographer

Gayleen's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

One summer night in a small prairie city, 18-year-old Gabriel Reece accidentally outs himself to his redneck brother Colin, flees on his motorcycle, and gets struck by lightning on his way out of town.

He’s strangely fine, walking away from his melted pile of bike without a scratch. There’s no time to consider his new inhuman durability before his brother disappears and his childhood home burns down. He’s become popular, too—local cops and a weird private eye are after him, wanting to know if his brother is behind a recent murder.

Answers might be in the ashes of the house where Gabe and Colin grew up, if Gabe and his friends can stay alive and out of jail long enough to find them.

Lightning Strike Blues

By Gayleen Froese,

What is this book about?

On Friday, Gabriel Reece gets struck by lightning while riding his motorcycle.

It's not the worst thing that happens to him that week.

Gabe walks away from a smoldering pile of metal without a scratch-or any clothes, which seem to have been vaporized. And that's weird, but he's more worried about the sudden disappearance of his brother, Colin, who ditched town the second Gabe accidentally outed himself as gay.

Gabe tries to sift through fragmented memories of his crummy childhood for clues to his sudden invincibility, but he barely has time to think before people around town start turning up…

5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in totalitarianism, colonies, and islands?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about totalitarianism, colonies, and islands.

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