Nick Lane

Life Ascending: The Ten Great Inventions of Evolution

Winner, Royal Society Prize for Science Books 2010

Nick Lane

Charts the history of life on Earth by describing the ten greatest inventions of life, based on their historical impact, their importance in living organisms and their iconic power.

Judges' comments

Maggie Philbin, Chair of the Judges said: “Life Ascending is a beautifully written and elegantly structured book that was a favourite with all of the judges.  Nick Lane hasn’t been afraid to challenge us with some tough science, explaining it in such a way that we feel like scientists ourselves, unfolding the mysteries of life.  Science writing shouldn’t patronise readers, it should help them to develop their scientific thinking and apply it to the world around them, something exemplified by this wonderful and engaging book.”

Nick Lane said: “I’ve been following the prize since its inception and I know it’s the highlight of the year for many scientists.  The prize stands for getting the best science to the widest audience possible and I hope that it attracts funding next year and continues for as long as possible.”

Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books

Royal Society Prize for Science Books

Aventis Prize for Science Books

See the full list of all the winners.