The Second Creation deals with some of the most important issues confronting us today: genetic engineering and cloning--or the control that science has over the process of life.
Written by the noted science author Colin Tudge, the book is based on interviews with Ian Wilmut and Keith Campbell, the scientists who cloned Dolly the sheep. Its aim is to explain the story of how and why they came to cloning sheep and the implications for the future from curing diseases to human cloning. But that's not easy to convey simply, according to Ian Wilmut: "The full story is, however, inescapably complicated. The science and technology of cloning, at least by our method, takes us into some of the most esoteric reaches of biology ... "
Their subject is complex and requires careful reading but the reward is worth the effort. Inevitably, the issue of human cloning is looked at in some detail and all three of the authors find the idea repugnant and do not believe society will accept it: "The pressures for human cloning are powerful; but, although it seems likely that somebody, at some time, will attempt it, we need not assume that it will ever become a common or significant feature of human life."
The book contains a comprehensive glossary to explain the scientific terms and abbreviations. Colin Tudge is the author of several books including The Engineer in the Garden, short listed for the British Science Book Award. --Carina Trimingham