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Vaxxers  By  cover art

Vaxxers

By: Sarah Gilbert,Catherine Green
Narrated by: Heather Long,Nicky Diss
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Publisher's Summary

The inside story of the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine, from two of the leading scientists who created it. Fully updated with a preface and a new chapter.

This is the story of a race—not against other vaccines or other scientists, but against a deadly and devastating virus.

On 1st January 2020, Sarah Gilbert, professor of vaccinology at Oxford University, read an article about four people in China with a strange pneumonia. Within two weeks, she and her team had designed a vaccine against a pathogen that no one had ever seen before. Less than 12 months later, vaccination was rolled out across the world to save millions of lives from COVID-19.

In Vaxxers, we hear directly from Professor Gilbert and her colleague, Dr Catherine Green, as they reveal the inside story of making the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine and the cutting-edge science and sheer hard work behind it. 

This is their story of fighting a pandemic as ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances. Sarah and Cath share the heart-stopping moments in the eye of the storm, they separate fact from fiction, they explain how they made a safe vaccine in record time with the eyes of the world watching and they give us hope for the future.

Vaxxers invites us into the lab to find out how science will save us from this pandemic, and how we can prepare for the inevitable next one.

©2021 Vaxxers Limited (P)2021 Hodder & Stoughton Ltd

What listeners say about Vaxxers

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Great Story Devolved Into Woke Rants

As a career scientist and bioengineer, I found the first eight chapters were incredibly interesting, deeply insightful and scientifically profound. But the narrative completely collapsed by Chapter Nine when the scientific narrative altogether descended into woke rants, social critiquing and America bashing to the point that I was looking for any handy airsickness bag. Seriously , if you wish a decent scientific narrative - look elsewhere. But if you want to take a bath in British wokeness and PC social whining disguised in a lab coat - then be my guest.

5 people found this helpful

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Another liberal rag

I found this book to be a misguided attempt to disguise the origin of the virus and its play on society. The author is clearly a paid agent of big Pharma, spreading misinformation to keep the pharmaceutical and health industry in a positive light. Disgusting and a rather boring read and/or listen.

Not even worth one star

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Extraordinary story

This book describes a very important work executing by several groups of experienced scientists. It not only covers the progress of vaccine development but also the the effort, the struggle and the preservers of these scientists. Most importantly, this book explains and clarified the misunderstanding of the Covid vaccines within some populations, which is why I recommend everyone to read it.

1 person found this helpful

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The tales behind the vaccine.

This is a great listen. In any argument, it'd be of a better judgement if anyone can listen to both side of the story. It's always good to really hear from "them" as well. After listening to this title I felt that the vaccine is more trust worthy and are made of good intention.

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Down to earth truth of saving the world

A real tale out the effort that goes to doing
Something to save the world

And the money that goes, sadly.

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Girl and science power!

A wonderful tale about two extraordinary ordinary women who are helping change our world. Their humanity pushes them forward and it is important to understand the story behind the news. From Katalin Kariko's MRNA to Sarah Gilbert's AZ these vaccines are made by women. The narrators make the story even more humane. A must read in these covid times! And to understand the battle between science and media.

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  • Rachel
  • 07-14-21

I don't think this book will date well.

The narration was very patronising and at times quite forced. it It was very biased (which all books are on this subject, both pro vaccine and vaccine sceptical ones). This book is very much like an advertisement for the AZ vaccine. This is interesting when the government yellow card system show the other vaccination brands are much, much safer.

18 people found this helpful

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  • Michelle C.
  • 07-08-21

Thank you

If you are interested in how these amazing people developed the vaccine then this book is for you. Read it today, day of release and really enjoyed it. So grateful we have such amazing talented scientists xxx

10 people found this helpful

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  • h
  • 07-12-21

Answered a lot of my questions

A fascinating tale. Covered all aspects of an incredible year for two supremely competent, systematic and hardworking scientists who are also clearly very human. The two voices worked well, both literally and as different takes on the same story. Only drawback, I am left feeling very inadequate (!) but even that is compensated for by the feeling I learned a lot. A timely reminder not to believe everything (anything?) you read in the media, social or traditional. Look at the data in its real world context and listen to the primary sources like these two. Let’s hope the idiot loudmouths have not undermined a safe, cheap, practicable and effective vaccine that can help the poorest as well as the rich. Thank you.

7 people found this helpful

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  • DJ
  • 08-01-21

Everyone should read this especially all politicians and any anti-vaxxers

This is a superb account by two of the scientists who played a lead road in planning and developing and producing the Covid vaccine at Oxford with Astra Zeneca
It is written in a language fully accessible to non scientists and explains the stages of the process, the set backs fears and ultimate incredible success of a vaccine that is saving millions of lives
The authors also lay out clearly what must be done now to make us better prepared for the next pandemic which will surely come

4 people found this helpful

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  • ScanLondon
  • 08-01-21

Brilliant - Straight from the "Horse's mouth".

Anyone who would like to gain an insight into the real "coal-face" challenges and processes in the sciences needs to read this book. Any "anti-vaxxers" will be comforted/educated and so for sure - need to read this book. Anyone who gets their news from social media needs to read this book.

Actually, anyone who would like to be informed by the experts vaxxer or anti-vaxxer will enjoy.

It's an excellent and accessible account of the amazing work of the Oxford scientists and the complexities of their world. I devoured it record time whilst walking and just pottering around. I particularly liked the personal/professional mix of narrative coupled with enough science to give me some "Aha" moments but not too deep as to switch me off.

Thoroughly recommend.

4 people found this helpful

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  • pal
  • 07-14-21

Brilliant

factual account of how the Oxford Astra zenica vaccine was developed funded and manufactured.
written from real life accounts of 2 of the leading scientist behind the vaccine.
easy to follow and gives a balamced understanding of why the vaccine is so important to the world and it's saftey.

3 people found this helpful

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  • treesarefree
  • 08-01-21

Remember these people not the politician's

incredibly well explained, by dedicated scientists doing their jobs to the best of their ability saving lives. Always thinking how to improve the outcomes for people globally. Thank you for sharing your stories.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Mike Aherne
  • 07-31-21

Read the book!

A fascinating book. Not just the story of the Oxford vaccine but also a discussion of vaccinations and the political implications. (That sentence makes it seem rather dry -it isn’t!).

Two narrators. The narrator reading Sarah’s sections is excellent. The one reading Catherine’s struggles at time. There are sections which sound like bad sight reading suggesting either the narrator had not prepared fully or the editor/producer was at fault for not doing retakes when necessary.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Alexandra
  • 07-30-21

Must read! Timely, human, factual

Fantastic book! Very well timed, I laughed, I cried. I’ve referred this book to everyone I know.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Kingpab
  • 07-28-21

Fantastic

Really good read. I would highly recommend this book.

Also I could listen to Heather Long and Nicky Diss talk all day. Really good voices for audible

2 people found this helpful

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  • Marita
  • 11-01-21

Impressive

This is a down to earth, easy to read book. I gives a lot of insight into what the scientists get up to and the issues they face. Couldn't help but be impressed. Very glad I read it and do recommend it. It put my mind to rest.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Bookworm
  • 03-02-23

Brilliant

An inspiring story of how a handful of mainly female scientists saved millions of people and helped ameliorate a global disaster. The perfect antidote to all the unscientific mumbo jumbo that has become part and parcel of living in the Covid era.

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  • Sarah Loomes
  • 09-13-22

A fabulous listen!

This is such a great listen, it is at an exciting and detailed enough level that I felt like I was right there with them cultivating the cells that would lead to vaccinate millions of people worldwide.

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  • James u
  • 05-06-22

excellent book

well written book full of details and information. extremely informative and useful information to make informed decisions

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  • Lauren Wilson
  • 10-29-21

Superb presentation

Had I known what I know now,I would never have hesitated to go for my vaccination. This Audio book is beyond words of praise. An incredible account,of endless work,and,determination to bring together an essential part of the fight against Covid 19. This audio book is definitely recommended to al

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  • Margaret Gaussen
  • 10-19-21

Thank you !

Thank you both so very much for writing this book.
I was very wary of being vaccinated, hearing all the "rumours", but finally went to the Oxford Uni site to see what I could find, and then went to get my first vaccination. Our family is now fully vaccinated with Astrazenica and very grateful there are souls in the world such as yours who research and follow up. Thank you for the dedication and work you have done. We all owe our luves to you both.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-02-21

Fantastic. Easy to understand and moving

I needed to read something like this to restore my faith in the indelible thirst for knowledge and the wish to help humankind.

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  • Claire Beech
  • 10-01-21

Excellent - Highly Recommend!

Not being an overly sciencey person, when my sister suggested I listened to this I slightly apprehensive. In lock down in Australia and having homeschooled my 3 primary school age children for 10 weeks and just going into school holidays my to do list was long.

Surprisingly, even being heavily Covid news fatigued, I found this just the distraction (and reassurance) that I needed.

It was so interesting hearing about all the processes involved and the methods used to speed things up and the challenges that these scientists and their teams encounter both during pandemic times and in usual times. So thankful and amazed by their brilliance, intelligence and resilience.

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  • Gerard
  • 09-26-21

These guys should win the Nobel Prize across all categories.

Next time you complain about putting on a mask or not being able to go to the pub take the time to read this instead.

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  • Happy camper
  • 09-12-21

An informative insight into AZ COVID vaccination

Thoroughly enjoyed this book, it is good to get an insight into what went into the rapid turn around of the AZ vaccine for COVID. Hopefully the funding issues are resolved to better prepare for future events.