Lab Girl - Hope Jahren

Lab Girl

By Hope Jahren

  • Release Date: 2016-04-05
  • Genre: Biographies & Memoirs
Score: 4.5
From 348 Ratings


NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD WINNER NATIONAL BESTSELLER • Geobiologist Hope Jahren has spent her life studying trees, flowers, seeds, and soil. Lab Girl is her revelatory treatise on plant life—but it is also a celebration of the lifelong curiosity, humility, and passion that drive every scientist.

"Does for botany what Oliver Sacks’s essays did for neurology, what Stephen Jay Gould’s writings did for paleontology.” —The New York Times

In these pages, Hope takes us back to her Minnesota childhood, where she spent hours in unfettered play in her father’s college laboratory. She tells us how she found a sanctuary in science, learning to perform lab work “with both the heart and the hands.” She introduces us to Bill, her brilliant, eccentric lab manager. And she extends the mantle of scientist to each one of her readers, inviting us to join her in observing and protecting our environment.

Warm, luminous, compulsively readable, Lab Girl vividly demonstrates the mountains that we can move when love and work come together. 


  • Lab Girl

    By skeptic951
    Compelling story of a journey from a chill dark Minnesota town where a young girl would accompany her science teacher father to his lab, to becoming a scientist herself. Written chronologically addressing the science and the life journey Hope Jahren makes a compelling case for plants, colleagues, light and science.
  • Lovely poetic writing

    By 12345qwertfdsa
    This is a beautiful book with gorgeous descriptions of trees that I read extra slowly to savor.
  • Great Book

    By asentientai
    It was nice to read about being a scientist from a woman’s perspective. My favorite part was Bill and his monkey doppelgänger.
  • Lab Girl

    By Jwalczuk
    Started out well.....then became pedantic and rather boring. I thought the author just wasn’t personal.
  • Fascinating

    By Jbrahms
    An unusual but fascinating memoir by an enthusiastic scientist who is keenly aware of being a woman in science and the headwinds that come with it. I loved reading about her one-of-a-kind relationship with Bill, her passionate bonding with plants and her labs, and the vagaries of succeeding in academia. Would loved to know more about Bill's place in her family circle and wish she would have told us. But all in all, a page-turner by a gifted writer. Highly recommended.
  • Heartfelt, passionate love affair!

    By davidsumnernyc
    This joyful, heartfelt, passionate love affair- a story filled with life, curiosity, compassion and incredible scientific inquiry- will lift your soul. Hope Jahren, clearly is an amazing woman and accomplished scientist, but mostly she's a wonderous gift to us all. Thankfully, she's an author too. You'll laugh; you'll cry. Brilliant!
  • Couldn't put it down!

    By Gamblegirl
    Hope Jahren's fascinating career in paleobotany is crystallized in this addictive memoir. Part adventure, part cautionary tale for women in a male-dominated field, her story is deftly woven with snippets of literary classics. I'll never look at a tree in the same way again. In fact, I'm going to plant one in her honor in our back yard!