"The great achievement of this book," observed the distinguished science writer Gerald Wendt, "is that it presents the basic concepts of biology in concise, lucid, orderly form and thus gradually and understandably transforms the miracle of life into a succession of miraculously simple processes." John Tyler Bonner's series of concise essays explores the foundations of modern biology: the cell, genetics, development, and evolution. "Biologists are fortunate in having such a scientist and author interpret these facts, for Dr. Bonner's style of writing contributes greatly to the success of the work," noted Library Journal, adding, "The drawings which accompany the text are excellent." Since evolution provides the framework for life, the author makes it his central theme, with introductory material on the living machine itself and succeeding chapters on heredity, embryonic development, and ultimately, relations between organisms and their environment. Written as a supplement to classroom biology texts, this volume can be read independently.