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Reviewed by Major Keary
Apart from being a marvellous introduction to molecular biology this Manga guide is a great example of how graphics can be used to explain complex scientific concepts. The technical illustrations are two-dimensional monochrome; no 3D, full colour, or animation—just simple drawings that can be created with simple tools (either pencil-and-paper or software). The illustrations may be simple—in that they do not involve complex elements— but are quite extraordinary in so far as the information they convey. Regardless of one's particular discipline this is well worth studying as a framework for what can be done with graphics that don't require a Ph.D in some highly expensive (by definition Windows-based) software.
Molecular biology is a fascinating subject that is too often glossed over by advertisers and those branches of the media that are so eager to subvert science. So, if you would like a painless and entertaining introduction The Manga Guide to Molecular Biology is the way to go. If you are a Linux programmer who would like to take advantage of the demand for simulation and statistical software required by microbiologists, The Manga Guide to Molecular Biology is an easily digestible introduction to the science.
A great example of what can be done in technical communication.
Masaharu Takemura: The Manga Guide to Molecular Biology
Published by No Starch Press, 225 pp., RRP AU$ 37.95
The Australian distributor is Woodslane <www.woodslane.com.au>