Read the Full Reviews

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Read the praise from other authors and scientists here. Want to buy the book? It is available to order in hardcover, e-book, and audio book formats.

Review Summaries

“[A] spirited, globe-trotting debut . . . Nature-minded readers will find themselves immersed in—and inspired by—Quave’s poignant tale.” — Publishers Weekly

“Quave’s inviting memoir demonstrates grit and determination and explains some of the fascinating and critical uses of plants for healing (including possible uses against antimicrobial resistance and even COVID-19).” —Library Journal (starred)

“Quave remains determined, resourceful, and cognizant of the alliances that have enabled her life’s work. . . . [She] exhibits a deep humanity and humility in her writing. This, along with her thrilling adventures—often with children in tow—spurs the reader on. In the end, she succeeds in demonstrating that plants are an underutilized resource for drug discovery and in communicating the many joys and challenges that accompany a career in science.” — Science Magazine

“[A] fascinating account of [Quave’s] development as a scientist, her research into the pharmacological potential of plants used in traditional medicine, the challenge of balancing work with motherhood, and her lifelong struggle with disability and infection…. A highly compelling—and alarming—memoir.”—Kirkus (starred)

“In the war against infectious diseases, Quave is a fierce combatant, exhibiting focused determination, admirable flexibility, and persuasive enthusiasm in this candidly personal narrative.”—Booklist

“It is an account of a quest so rich in detail that even a casual reader will reach the last page with a fuller understanding of the scientific method and the state of medical research today, as well as enlightenment over this country’s challenges in developing and marketing new pharmaceuticals.”—The Bulletin (The Garden Club of America)

“This book is fascinating for anyone who is curious about the potential impact that plants, waiting in the wings for scientific discovery, can have on our health. . . . [It] is a wonderfully engaging memoir of how Quave first ventured into science and ultimately the field of ethnobiology . . . [that] is inspiring and easy to grasp even for those who have no grasp of—or curiosity about—science.”
—The Marin Independent Journal