We all assume we know what life is, but the more scientists learn about the living world—from protocells to brains, from zygotes to pandemic viruses—the harder they find it is to locate life’s edge.
In his new book, Life’s Edge, Carl Zimmer investigates one of the biggest questions of all: What is life? The answer seems obvious until you try to seriously answer it. Is the apple sitting on your kitchen counter alive, or is only the apple tree it came from deserving of the word? If we can’t answer that question here on earth, how will we know when and if we discover alien life on other worlds? Life's Edge is an utterly fascinating investigation that no one but one of the most celebrated science writers of our generation could craft.