Thomas Hager

Thomas Hager

I tell dramatic stories about world-changing discoveries. To bring this deeply researched and painstakingly accurate material to life for a wide readership I borrow from the fiction writer's paintbox, enlivening my nonfiction stories with sharply drawn characters, strange settings, surprising twists, and page-turning plots. All that, and a good dose of solid science, too. My work has earned national recognition, including the American Chemical Association's top writing award (the Grady-Stack Medal for Interpreting Chemistry for the Public), and a finalist nod for the Communications Award from the National Academies of Sciences, Medicine, and Engineering. After getting bored working at a lab bench while earning a couple of Master's degrees, I slowly slogged through the hills and valleys of science communication, going broke working as a freelancer, earning my stripes as a medical journalist (including stints as a contributor to the Journal of the American Medical Association and American Health), and finally ascending the benign if sometimes rocky heights of book writing: Most recently, "Ten Drugs: How Plants, Powders, and Pills Have Shaped the History of Medicine" ("absorbing" --New York Times Book Review; “Lucidly informative and compulsively readable” -- Publishers Weekly); " "The Alchemy of Air: A Jewish Genius, a Doomed Tycoon, and the Discovery that Fed the World but Fueled the Rise of Hitler" (Borders Original Voices selection; Kirkus Best Books of the Year); and "The Demon Under the Microscope: From Battlefield Hospitals to Nazi Labs, One Doctor's Heroic Search for the World's First Miracle Drug" ("fascinating" -- Los Angeles Times; "a grand story" -- Wall St. Journal). I am a courtesy associate professor of communications and journalism at the University of Oregon, and live in the wooded hills near Eugene.

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