We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
Call anytime(888) 283-5051
A Life Decoded: My Genome - My Life | [J. Craig Venter]

A Life Decoded: My Genome - My Life

Growing up in California, J. Craig Venter didn't appear to have much of a future. An unremarkable student, he nearly flunked out of high school. After being drafted into the army, he enlisted in the Navy and went to Vietnam, where the life-and-death struggles he encountered as a medic piqued his interest in science and medicine. After pursuing his advanced degrees, Venter quickly established himself as a brilliant and outspoken scientist.
Regular Price:$27.99
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

Growing up in California, J. Craig Venter didn't appear to have much of a future. An unremarkable student, he nearly flunked out of high school. After being drafted into the army, he enlisted in the Navy and went to Vietnam, where the life-and-death struggles he encountered as a medic piqued his interest in science and medicine. After pursuing his advanced degrees, Venter quickly established himself as a brilliant and outspoken scientist.

In 1984 he joined the National Institutes of Health, where he introduced novel techniques for rapid gene discovery. He left in 1991 to form his own nonprofit genomics research center, where he sequenced the first genome in history in 1995. In 1998 he announced that he would successfully sequence the human genome years earlier and for far less money than the government-sponsored Human Genome Project would - a prediction that came to pass in 2001.

A Life Decoded is the triumphant story of one of the most fascinating and controversial figures in science today. In this riveting and inspiring account, Venter tells of the unparalleled drama of the quest for the human genome, a tale that involves as much politics as science. He also reveals how he went on to be the first to read and interpret his own genome and what it will mean for all of us to do the same. He describes his recent sailing expedition to sequence microbial life in the ocean, as well as his groundbreaking attempt to create synthetic life. Here is one of the key scientific chronicles of our lifetime, as told by the man who beat the odds to make it happen.

©2007 J. Craig Venter; (P)2007 Tantor Media Inc.

What the Critics Say

"[Venter is] not just trying to understand how life works; he's trying to make it work for him, and us." (The Atlantic Monthly)
"Well worth reading for the fascinating perspective it offers on one of the major scientific discoveries of all time." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (79 )
5 star
 (36)
4 star
 (22)
3 star
 (15)
2 star
 (6)
1 star
 (0)
Overall
4.2 (16 )
5 star
 (8)
4 star
 (4)
3 star
 (3)
2 star
 (1)
1 star
 (0)
Story
4.2 (17 )
5 star
 (9)
4 star
 (3)
3 star
 (4)
2 star
 (1)
1 star
 (0)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Roy Beaumont, TX, United States 06-02-09
    Roy Beaumont, TX, United States 06-02-09 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1704
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    471
    273
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    532
    0
    Overall
    "Take it with a Grain of Salt"

    Craig Venter in "A Life Deoded" sets out to detail his involvement in the unraveling of the Human Genome. This is a great story and a wonderful read. Opening autobiographical sections drag a little, but things pick up when his research begins. His sections on the establishment of TIGR, Celera, and JCVI are more interesting than one might imagine.

    That said, an autobiography must be biased and one sided (as the author points out in the introduction). Yet his descriptions of political hazards of funding biological research are worth reading. The listener will benefit from the information about Genes and the research in general.

    Craig's first two marriages came apart. He missed out on raising his son from the first. Craig seems to regret his loss, but never really reflects on the price paid by his son for his glory. His son paid for the Human Genome project as well. I wonder if Craig ever took his son along to share his visits with the Clinton's in the White House?

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nathan Atlanta, GA, USA 02-01-08
    Nathan Atlanta, GA, USA 02-01-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    19
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    18
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "-fantastic"

    -The storyline is classic: a horrifying vietnam experience motivates Venter to "live life to its fullest". Provides great insight into the personal motivations of a world class scientist.

    - Good balance of the "tabloid politics" with the hardcore science of sequencing the human genome. Note, prior genetics knowledge is not required, but it will definitely enrich the experience.

    -Also, I thought the Narration was excellent.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tadhg San Francisco, CA, USA 05-21-08
    Tadhg San Francisco, CA, USA 05-21-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Interesting"

    If you are interested in science and the genome in particular then this will probably have enough to interest you. I can't vouch for its appeal to a more general audience.

    It unashamedly presents one side of the story. You'll have to look elsewhere for an unbiased version. Personally I like the edge given by the authors obvious bias towards one side of the story.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bennett south lyon, MI, United States 09-04-10
    Bennett south lyon, MI, United States 09-04-10 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    37
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    56
    11
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "The best scientist of our era!"

    This book is by far the best book I've listened to on audible. As an aspiring scientist I found Craig Venter's story to be riveting and revealing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Morris 03-25-09
    R. Morris 03-25-09
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    Overall
    "From a non-Science person"

    I had to read this book for a book report due for one of my classes. I didn't have the patience to read the actual book so I just listened to the audiobook. I took a full year biology class last year and I believe that that was needed because he does talk about biology a lot.

    Moreover, with my limited background in biology, I enjoyed this book. Especially, the time he spent in Vietnam. It did get a bit dry around times. And his story is extremely and overtly biased. But that doesn't take too much away from the story. If you don't know anything about biology, I don't know if you will enjoy this book. I at least had some background from a college course and that was sufficient enough to enjoy the book. Again, if you're like me, the enjoyment is intermittent but overall a good read (listen)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    E. 06-15-08
    E. 06-15-08 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    38
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    122
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Fascinating!"

    This book makes you think, both as recent history and a biography with some depth. There is good balance between both and not too much of either. Obviously Ventner is an excellent writer as well as scientist.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-6 of 6 results

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.