Egg & Ego: An Almost True Story of Life in the Biology Lab by J.M.W. Slack
A light-hearted look at the nature of academic science, intended for anyone interested in biology but particularly for biology students who want to find out what the future holds in store. The "Egg" of the title refers to the science of developmental biology, which is the speciality of the author, and which provides the material for many of the anecdotes. The "Ego" relates to the vanity of the scientists themselves. Academic scientists have to struggle to maintain their research funding. To do this they must persuade other scientists that they are very good, and that means working at a good institution, publishing papers in the most fashionable journals and giving lectures at the most prestigious meetings. Success often goes to those with the largest egos and it is their style of operation that is described in this book. The author is a well-known scientist who has worked at both universities and research institutes. He has published over 100 scientific papers and an influential book about embryonic development: "From Egg to Embryo".