Indian-American author of pathbreaking books on the history of medicine, Siddhartha Mukherjee, is on the long-list for the Wellcome Book Prize of a U.K.-based foundation.
Mukherjee’s latest book, The Gene: Genetics, History of Science, Medicine, is in the non-fiction category among 12 authors — seven non-fiction and five fiction titles. The list includes memoir, contemporary fiction, historical fiction and popular science, which the Wellcome Book Prize announced Jan. 30, “showcase the breadth and depth of our encounters with medicine.”
The Gene is the story of the quest to decipher the master-code of instructions that makes and defines humans, that governs our form, function, and fate and determines the future of our children, according to a description on Mukherjee’s website.
Mukherjee earlier work, The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer, made it to the Wellcome shortlist in 2011. Books have to be recommended by publishers and be published by a UK-based publisher in the previous year.
The Columbia University assistant professor of medicine and cancer physician and researcher, won the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for The Emperor of All Maladies. He also wrote The Laws of Medicine. He is the editor of Best Science Writing 2013. A Rhodes scholar, he graduated from Stanford University, University of Oxford, and Harvard Medical School. He has published articles in Nature, The New England Journal of Medicine, The New York Times, and Cell. He lives in New York with his wife and daughters.
Wellcome describes itself as a global charitable foundation, both politically and financially independent, which supports scientists and researchers, takes on big problems, fuels imaginations, and sparks debate. The Wellcome Book Prize of 30,000 pounds or approximately $66,000 is an annual award open to new works of fiction or non-fiction with a central theme that engages with some aspect of medicine, health or illness. This can cover many genres of writing – including crime, romance, popular science, sci fi and history.
The shortlist will be announce on March 14, and the winner on April 24.