Cats are Not Peas: A Calico History of Genetics

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Copernicus, 1996 - Pets - 228 pages
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The chance acquisition of George, a very rare male calico kitten, sent Laura Gould on an unexpected and lengthy odyssey into the history of genetics. She thought she remembered that all calico cats were female. But why was that? And how did the rare exceptions like George occur? Gould's curiosity about her new cat's existence caused her to learn some basic genetics, to examine its history, and to explore cat folklore. The result is a thoroughly enjoyable and not too technical book narrated with inimitable grace and wit. In this story of an unrecognized chapter in the history of science, Gould takes us from ancient theories about inheritance and sex determination, through Mendel's famous experiments with his round and wrinkled peas, to speculations by Darwin and others about the rare male calicos. The struggles of early twentieth-century scientists to find and study rare male calicos in the hope of answering fundamental questions in the newly emerging field of genetics are explored in amusing detail.

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User Review  - Cheryl_in_CC_NV - LibraryThing

Too technical for me - I just never could, still can't, understand mitosis and meiosis and chromosomes.  Gould does write engagingly, clearly; it's definitely my failing.  Too bad. Read full review

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User Review  - kencf0618 - LibraryThing

I've never been able to wrap my head around genetics, but I have something of a handle now on DNA thanks to this book. Read full review


Georges Ancient Ancestry

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