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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's catchy, 5 Aug 2013
By 
J. Morris "Josh" (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Viruses: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
The Very Short Introduction series are written by professors of the subject and are aimed at provoking cross-discipline intrigue in the reader that may incite further investigation and reading - and boy are they good at achieving exactly that; often they leave more questions than answers.

Viruses cover the structure, transmission and nature of viruses. Detailing the major types (Herpes, Hepatic & Oncogenic) and listing their prevalence, composition and likely origins using the molecular clock method. The range and scope of these chapters (the core of the book) is astounding, nearly all of us will be carrying some of this selection of passengers which make it all the more relevant to have some sort of understanding of them and their spread.

It also covers vaccines and antivirals and looks to the future, stating that we have only just scratched the surface of the virosphere and there are many, many more 'new' viruses out there just waiting to be discovered. Best of all, the book has been written for the initiate to the subject, even stating this point and points anyone to the glossary should there be a verbal curve-ball in there.

I read this in a string of VSIs (Bacteria:VSI, Viruses:VSI & finally Epidemiology:VSI) and would really, really recommend doing this as there is significant overlap and the trio really fit together to paint a greater picture. All in all, a great little 131-page A6 VSI wrapped in a Rothko-esque cover. Highly recommended.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars an excellent synopsis, 26 Aug 2011
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This review is from: Viruses: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
This introduction to viruses is avowedly written for the general reader, and covers the topic very comprehensively for such a short book. I knew almost nothing about viruses except that they make me ill. I did not know that the oceans are teeming with viruses and that viruses go back a long way into history; and that many of them do not make people ill. The author describes clearly and carefully the properties and characteristics of viruses, how they function as parasites in animal and plant cells, and what can be done to counter them. (Keeping away from Africa and bats seems to be advisable.) I'm no biologist, but I felt I was not being patronised, and I was left much better informed.

This is well written and an excellent synopsis of the subject. Strongly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a non-fiction page-turner, 11 Sep 2013
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This review is from: Viruses: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
This book is amazingly readable (having read 'The Invisible Enemy' by the same author, several years back, I expected greater technical detail and higher demands on concentration). There are many commendable features:

(a) it is written clearly, conveying the author's enthusiasm, and is nowhere patronising;
(b) it is so packed with memorable details, that I pencil-marked sections to revisit; eg, on p16 we read that there are more viruses in the world than all other forms of life added together, and on p21 we find that phytoplankton produce almost half the world's oxygen;
(c) the humour is delightful; eg Peter Medawar's description of a virus as "a piece of bad news wrapped up in protein".
The later chapters of the book are simply so exciting that I found it almost impossible to finish a chapter without starting the next. A treat!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Introduction to viruses, 21 Jan 2013
This review is from: Viruses: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
This book is a really good starting point for anyone with an interest in or studying virology. I am currently doing a degree in zoology and found this book very useful and informative in helping with my microbial module.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful, reference material, 6 Feb 2013
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A brief and concise overview, useful as reference material and introduction to virology. Not in depth for more experienced virologists but a useful tool none the less
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 25 Sep 2014
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Easy read, gives a good overview.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good read, 2 May 2013
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This review is from: Viruses: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
This book offers a fantastic introduction to an interesting field of biology. It obviously doesn't compare to nor could it replace a textbook in the field. However for an easy read for someone with an interest in science or who only needs a brief overview this book is great. I loved reading it!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars cracking good read, 9 Mar 2014
By 
G. Gromble "grim" (UK) - See all my reviews
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one of those books that enthrals and prompts one to go and find out more. just what one would hope from a very short introduction.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting look at viruses, 11 April 2012
This review is from: Viruses: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
This is a bit in depth fpr me but intersting regardless. It makes one think that the reality of man is actually a genetic makeup and nothing more
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Viruses: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)
Viruses: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) by Dorothy H. Crawford (Paperback - 28 July 2011)
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