Reviews and Commentary

I. Full-Length Reviews

II.  Commentary from Law

III.  Commentary from Neuroscience

IV.  Commentary from Other Fields

I. Full-Length Reviews:

Hon. Andre Davis, United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, Review in The SciTech Lawyer (Spring 2015)

“…Law and Neuroscience will surely take its rightful place as a practical, deeply informative, and imminently readable contribution to this evolving field of inquiry…[It] provides an extraordinary survey of the wide array of issues surrounding the sometimes intractable questions posed by scientific advances on legal doctrine…Anyone, including thousands upon thousands of lawyers, who seeks a deeper understanding of human behavior will benefit from its availability…” (Click to read the full SciTech Lawyer Book Review: Law and Neuroscience)

Hon. Nancy Gertner (Retired), United States District Court Judge for the District of Massachusetts (1994-2011), Review in Journal of Law and the Biosciences (March 2015)

“…This is not the first time that time worn legal concepts have been challenged by an evolving science and technology. But rarely does one see a volume as comprehensive
as this so early in the discussion of neurolaw, raising many questions before they hit the courts or legislatures, before the law responds in inconsistent directions, before practices are written in stone. It is an invaluable book on many levels to many constituencies—students, professors, scholars, lawyers, and not the least of which, judges.” (Click to read the full Journal of Law and the Biosciences Book Review)

David L. Faigman, John F. Digardi Distinguished Professor of Law, UC Hastings, Review in Jurimetrics (Winter 2016)

“Law and Neuroscience … builds its lessons largely around case law…. These materials are all excellent and the authors have edited them with sharp pens and discerning eyes. Indeed, at times… the casebook turns into a real page-turner. [It is] … invaluable for the law student, but would also provide an effective guide for lawyers and judges needing to manage this complex evidence.” (Click to read the full Jurimetrics Book Review)

Rita R. Handrich, Ph.D, Review in The Jury Expert (November 2014)

“…Law and Neuroscience is perhaps the ultimate reference guide for any of us (and that would be all of us) who find ourselves faced with questions on the human brain and behavior, new technologies that give us glimpses into and dazzling pictures of the brain, questions about the role of personal responsibility in behavior, and whether neuroscience findings will ultimately inform or mislead the triers of fact…” (Click to read the full Jury Expert Book Review: Law and Neuroscience)

II.  Commentary from Law:

John Monahan, Shannon Distinguished Professor of Law, Psychology, and Psychiatry and Neurobehavioral Sciences, University of Virginia

“In Law and Neuroscience, Owen Jones, Jeffrey Schall, and Francis Shen have produced a remarkably accessible and profoundly thought-provoking account of the uses of cutting-edge brain science in courtrooms and policymaking. Their analysis is as trenchant as their coverage is broad, spanning topics as diverse as lie-detection, judging, emotions, memory, and the adolescent brain. With the publication of this landmark book, the field of law and neuroscience has come of age.”

Fred Schauer, David and Mary Harrison Distinguished Professor of Law, University of Virginia School of Law

“Perspectives from modern neuroscience are increasingly a central part of judicial, policy, and academic discussions of criminal law, torts, evidence, law and mental health, juvenile law, family law, and many other legal fields. Jones, Schall, and Shen have assembled a volume that is extraordinarily comprehensive, admirably balanced, and thorough in its use of materials from both law and from neuroscience. In its use of reported and unreported cases, scientific reports and articles, trial transcripts, and much else, this book is ideally suited for a course on law and neuroscience, and equally valuable as a reference book for practitioners, judges, and policymakers.”

Stephen Morse, Ferdinand Wakeman Hubbell Professor of Law; Professor of Psychology and Law in Psychiatry; Associate Director, Center for Neuroscience & Society, University of Pennsylvania Law School

“Not only have Jones, Schall and Shen written a superb, richly intellectual and rigorously challenging casebook, they have also created and defined a fascinating new field of legal study. Students, professors and practicing lawyers will benefit for years to come.”

Amanda C. Pustilnik, Associate Professor of Law, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law

“Jones, Schall, and Shen have written the essential introduction to an important and growing field. Consisting of thoughtful introductions to each of the major areas of law & neuroscience scholarship, and gathering a curated selection of primary source materials on each topic, the text promises to be valuable to readers seeking both an overview of the field and the ability to go deeper into areas of interest. Certainly useful in the classroom, this work should be an important reference on the shelves of scholars, judges, advocates, policymakers, or anyone else with an interest in the ways in which our increasing understanding of the human brain relates to key legal and policy questions.”

Morris Hoffman, District Court Judge and Adjunct Professor of Law, University of Colorado and University of Denver

“I’ve used this book twice, and will be using it a third time this fall. It is a terrific teaching device: well-organized, thoughtful, and appropriately balanced between science and law.”

Peter Alces, Rita Anne Rollins Professor of Law, William & Mary Law School

“Law & Neuroscience is one of those very rare events in law and legal education that shifts the paradigm. The materials it collects and flawlessly organizes will challenge students (and their professors) to think of legal doctrine and the moral assumptions that found our law in a new way. It is an unusually, even uniquely thoughtful accomplishment that creatively covers a great deal of pedagogical ground as it describes a research agenda for the important work that remains to be done. I have used this book, in a polished but not final form, in a large class and the students responded very well. They recognized the provocative challenges emerging neuroscientific insights present and eagerly engaged the editors’ juxtaposition of evidentiary and doctrinal concerns. Most helpfully, the materials do not require a pre-existing familiarity with the sciences, a fact that was a great comfort to the broad cross section of students who took the course (and their former English major professor too). This book confirms that these are, indeed, exciting times.”

Betsy Grey, Professor of Law, Alan A. Matheson Fellow, Faculty Fellow, Center for Law, Science & Innovation, Arizona State University Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law

“This textbook is a significant contribution to the fast developing area of Law and Neuroscience. It addresses core legal issues involved in decision making and responsibility. Among other areas, it explores the significant challenges by neuroscience developments to criminal law, tort law, contract law, and constitutional law. With its interdisciplinary approach, it collects the most noteworthy developments in the field and includes incisive commentary on the current trends in the area. In addition, it is designed to be accessible to those less familiar with the basic principles of the various disciplines that are studied here – neuroscience, psychology , philosophy and law – with links to background information for further reading. It is comprehensive without being overwhelming and can easily be tailored to fit the scope of different class approaches.”

Gilbert S. Merritt, Senior Judge, United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit

“This first-of-its kind synthesis of legal norms with the new brain science is a real tour de force and should initiate a course in every law school and every continuing legal education program for lawyers and judges.”

I. Glenn Cohen, Professor of Law; Faculty Director, Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology & Bioethics; Harvard Law School

“This book captures an exciting moment in the development of a field. It is a first of its kind textbook for use by faculty in law and other fields interested in teaching in this area.”

Stacey A. Tovino, Lincy Professor of Law; Lehman Professor of Law; William S. Boyd School of Law; University of Nevada, Las Vegas

“As its title suggests, Law and Neuroscience is an extraordinary collection of authorities examining the intersection of the dynamic fields of law and neuroscience. The book is a welcome contribution to the field that will be enjoyed by undergraduate and graduate students in a range of professional and non-professional disciplines, including law, medicine, public health, allied health, basic science, bioethics, medical humanities, history of science, and other humanities-based fields. The readings are superbly grouped by their relation to brain, behavior, and responsibility; the fundamentals of cognitive neuroscience; and core themes in law and neuroscience. The expertly edited materials in Part 3 relating to fundamentals of cognitive neuroscience will be particularly helpful to law and other non-science students. The core-theme readings in Part 4 relating to the injured brain, the thinking and feeling brain, and the developing and addicted brain, are particularly well organized and will aid even the most experienced neurolaw or neuroethics professor in course preparation and presentation. The future of law and neuroscience, including cognitive enhancement, brain-machine interface and law, and artificial intelligence and law, is well presented in Part 5. Law and Neuroscience is a must-have text for neurolaw and neuroethics scholars and students alike.”

David Faigman, John F. Digardi Distinguished Professor of Law, University of California, Hastings College of the Law

“Professors Owen Jones, Jeffrey Schall and Francis Shen’s new Casebook, “Law and Neuroscience,” is a tour de force. It is, foremost, a comprehensive introduction to a compelling subject. It integrates cutting edge scientific thought with a sophisticated appreciation of the subtle contours of both the procedure and substance of the law. For anyone working at a crossroads where law and science meet, this casebook will serve as an exemplar of how to communicate across disciplines. Its publication is a major achievement, one that will have an impact that extends well beyond its immediate audience. It will surely help shape the conversation in academia on law and neuroscience. But, perhaps more importantly, it will influence how scholars think about interdisciplinary collaboration across the entire law and science frontier.”

Jane Campbell Moriarty, Carol Los Mansmann Chair in Faculty Scholarship, Professor of Law and Associate Dean for Faculty Scholarship, Duquesne University School of Law

“Law and Neuroscience is a wonderful textbook–I hesitate to call it a casebook because it is so much more. Seamlessly combining science, law and ethical considerations, the text is organized around a variety of fascinating core themes: The Injured Brain; The Thinking and Feeling Brain; the Developing and Addicted Brain, and so on. Given this organizational structure, Law and Neuroscience allows professors maximum flexibility in selecting subjects to cover and can be used by professors in various specialties. Particularly noteworthy is that the text presents the complexity of neuroscience with depth and accuracy but remains accessible to the student largely unschooled in the subject. Clear, well-constructed, and interesting, Law and Neuroscience includes ample cases, diagrams, segments from articles, and excellent questions to guide the reader. This interdisciplinary casebook was several years in the making and it shows. The book is a tour de force that will be a model for other interdisciplinary casebooks to follow. I am thrilled to be using it with students this year and for many years to follow.”

Gideon Yaffe, Professor of Law & Professor of Philosophy & Psychology, Yale Law School

“This book is an extraordinary resource and a great accomplishment. The law will be responding to and incorporating insights from neuroscience for some time to come. This book provides students and legal professionals with just what they need to be prepared.”

Neal Feigenson, Professor of Law, Quinnipiac University School of Law

“Understanding neuroscience and law is challenging for three reasons: the neuroscience, the law, and the interactions between them. The science is technically complex and constantly changing. The many implications of neuroscience for legal decision making and policy are hotly contested. And the interactions continue to multiply as neuroscientific evidence is offered in new areas of the law and for new purposes. Law and Neuroscience provides a remarkably effective and highly accessible introduction to this dynamic field. Professors Jones, Schall, and Shen teach the basic neuroscience clearly and thoroughly. Their interdisciplinary materials range broadly across legal domains and from the courtroom to the culture at large. Above all, Law and Neuroscience offers a lively, detailed, and well informed entrée to the controversies prompted by almost every facet of neurolaw, giving students and teachers the tools they need to engage in these debates intelligently and creatively.”

Peter Huang, Professor of Law, DeMuth Chair of Business Law, University of Colorado Law School

“This is a tour-de-force introduction to neuroscience and its application to legal doctrine, issues, and policy. I wish this would have been available several years ago because it would have been a great course book and resource for a neuroscience and law seminar I co-taught at Yale law school.”

Jennifer A. Drobac, Professor of Law, Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law

“Law and Neuroscience is a wonderful introductory textbook to this new avenue of interdisciplinary study. Covering a breadth of subtopics and the divergent opinions regarding the utility of neuroscientific evidence, this book brings together a remarkable amount of legal and scientific information. Unlike many law school textbooks, this one is accessible to lay readers whose interests may include social work, psychology, sociology, and other field disciplines. I recommend this text highly.”

Ted Blumoff, Professor, Mercer University School of Law

“It’s a rare occurrence when a text is released and it turns out to be more than a text book: It’s a resource.”

Emily Murphy, Ph.D; Litigator, Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP, Los Angeles, California

“Professors Jones, Schall, and Shen have produced the foundational text of an interdisciplinary field. Law and Neuroscience is important for its scope as well as its substance, making it useful as a tool for teaching and scholarship but also as reference for practitioners, lawmakers, and judges. Neuroscience and law intersect at all points on the continuum of legal issues from philosophical to extremely practical. The first surge of serious scholarship in the field has produced thinking across this broad range. This text organizes and builds on that work in a way that moves that thinking forward, while providing an access point to a complex field for newcomers from any background. The text is thus both introductory and advanced.”

Marc Jonathan Blitz, Alan Joseph Bennett Professor of Law, Oklahoma City University

“Not only is this the first legal casebook on this fascinating and cutting-edge topic. It’s a wonderful model for how any interdisciplinary casebook of this kind can make science (and its implications) intelligible to, and interesting for, students of law, ethics, and policy. Apart from a well-chosen and skillfully-edited set of cases and other materials from all areas of law and neuroscience, the casebook also provides the authors’ own lucid and invaluable guidance on each topic. It includes clear and engaging primers on the brain, and the methods that scientists use to study it – including an incredibly step-by-step guide to understanding fMRI scans and their possible use in studies of legal decision-making. Jones, Schall and Shen also provide – in their supplementary Web-based materials — an extensive and well-organized bibliography for further reading and research in each of the topics they cover, with links to electronic versions of many key articles. So their work not only provides a first-rate introduction to Law and Neuroscience – it provides a perfect for foundation for deeper, more specialized study. A terrific text, both for classes and seminars in Law & Neuroscience, and for individual students and scholars looking for a clear and comprehensive overview of the field.”

Jeffrey Rachlinski, Professor of Law, Cornell Law School

“As advances in neuroscience continue to revolutionize the social sciences, its reach will certainly extend into law. This book provides a comprehensive guide to the coming revolution in how we understand everything from the origins of crime to how people reason about causation and responsibility.”

Richard J. Bonnie, Harrison Foundation Professor of Law and Medicine, University of Virginia School of Law

“The book has two characteristics that make it ideal for such challenging subject — It is accessible to law students with little scientific background and a lot of curiosity. And it will suit the tastes and ambitions of teachers with diverse perspectives and substantive interests in the subject.”

Oliver R. Goodenough, Director, Center for Legal Innovation, Professor of Law, Vermont Law School

“Law and Neuroscience is an invaluable tool. It captures both the excitement and the caution with which we should approach this emerging field of law. It also provides a model for interdisciplinary pedagogy that will have influence across the broad range of ‘law and …’ subject matters.”

Michael Saks, Regents’ Professor of Law and Psychology; Fellow, Center for Law, Science & Innovation, Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, Arizona State University

“Neuroscience is the most recent major addition to scientific efforts to better understand thought, emotion, and behavior.

With new knowledge come new opportunities and challenges for the law: New perspectives and tools addressing persistent problems such as competence, violence, lie detection, measurement of physical and emotional pain, fidelity and distortion of memory, addiction. Rejuvenated conundrums about basic conceptions of responsibility and the nature of the “person.” The spawning of new forms of expert evidence, perhaps to inform, perhaps to mislead legal decision-makers. Not to mention the possibility of science fiction changing to reality in a courtroom near you, such as cognitive enhancement and human-machine intelligence.

Innovative lawyers already are harnessing emerging neuroscience knowledge and technology to fashion new arguments to address old legal questions as well as to formulate new legal issues.

In all of these, law and society will be best served by becoming informed and intelligent consumers. (The law has not always been – sometimes embracing too quickly what is not demonstrably sound, other times spurning what is.)

Jones, Schall & Shen’s Law and Neuroscience offers scholars, students, and practitioners a comprehensive and well-informed look at the current state of neuroscience, its implications for the law, and a preview of the future of this interdisciplinary intersection. Law and Neuroscience is a first-rate contribution to this new and rapidly expanding area of growing interest.”

III.  Commentary from Neuroscience:

Marcus Raichle, Professor of Radiology, Neurology, Anatomy & Neurobiology, Washington University School of Medicine; 2014 Kavli Prize Recipient

“As the law seeks to regulate behavior in the interest of a more just society it is being confronted with an exponentially increasing amount of information on the human brain and behavior that must be understood if it is to be applied wisely. This ground-breaking text is destined to play a pivotal role in the education of legal scholars, judges, and law students as they seek to understand more fully the role of neuroscience in the courtroom. Correspondingly, neuroscientists need to become aware of the manner in which their data will be interpreted and used by the law. Bringing law and neuroscience together is a challenge we face. This textbook meets that challenge head on.”

Joshua Greene, Professor of Psychology; Director, Moral Cognition Lab, Harvard University

“Human behavior is caused by the brain and regulated by the law. No surprise, then, that neuroscience raises profound legal questions. Some questions are new, arising from technologies promising to solve longstanding legal problems. Others are old questions about human nature, posed with renewed urgency as souls give way to neurons. From courtroom procedure to philosophical paradox, this volume is the definitive guide to the subject of law and neuroscience, covering every major issue from multiple perspectives. For students and professionals who want to know how neuroscience will (and won’t) transform the law, this is the place to start.”

Helen S. Mayberg, Professor, Psychiatry, Neurology and Radiology; Dorothy C. Fuqua Chair in Psychiatric Neuroimaging and Therapeutics; Emory University School of Medicine

“Law and Neuroscience is a much needed compendium of all major issues in the field. It will serve as an important reference for legal scholars, practitioners, neuroscientists, and ethicists — as it is broad and comprehensive in scope and balanced in perspective.”

Judith Edersheim, Co-Director, Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Law, Brain & Behavior; Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

“Jones, Schall and Shen undertook a heroic task with their new casebook on Law and Neuroscience, one which they accomplished with grace and utility. This interdisciplinary work has to teach each complex field and translate between the two as it progresses – a little bit like asking Hansel and Gretel to throw breadcrumbs ahead of themselves in order to blaze a trail. In this groundbreaking textbook, these three pioneers of the field make all the right introductions: humanists meet scientists, lawyers meet doctors, compatibilists meet determinists. Everyone interested in law and the brain should keep this book within arm’s reach. It will certainly be within an arm’s length of my desk.”

Robert M. Sapolsky, John A. and Cynthia Fry Gunn Professor and Professor of Neurology and of Neurosurgery, Stanford School of Medicine

“It’s a relief when something new and wildly trendy is actually worth the hype. We have an instance of this concerning the emerging interdisciplinary field of “neurolaw,” the attempt to bring contemporary neuroscience into the workings of the legal system. This is certainly a good thing, since advances in brain science should upend notions of free will, volition, culpability and responsibility. This book constitutes an accessible introduction to the subject for legal students and scholars, with topics ranging from the nuts and bolts of how to make sense of a neuroscience paper to the most fundamental of all questions raised by this subject — are we nothing more than a collection of neurons? This is a superb book for anyone interested in this hugely important subject.”

Martha Farah, Walter H. Annenberg Professor of Natural Sciences, University of Pennsylvania

“This will be the definitive source for learning about neurolaw, for students and practitioners alike. The editors combed the sizable literature on law, decision neuroscience, developmental neuroscience and other relevant topics to arrive at a well-chosen set of readings that capture the state of the art in neurolaw. To that they added substantial original introductory material, to equip readers with the necessary background, and excellent questions and topics for discussion, for use in the classroom or by individual readers who wish to engage more actively with the book’s content. All told, a broad but discerning collection that makes neurolaw as accessible as it is fascinating!”

Larry Squire, Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry, Neurosciences,
and Psychology, University of California, San Diego; Research Career Scientist, Veterans Affairs Medical Center San Diego

“This expertly-edited, masterly volume brings together a wide variety of material from case reports, magazine articles, scholarly journals, and books and interleaves this with summaries, notes, and questions as well as useful introductory text about the brain, cognition, and brain imaging. This will be an excellent course book for exploring ways in which neuroscience has become relevant to criminal and civil law.”

Valerie F. Reyna, Professor of Human Development and Psychology, Director of the Human Neuroscience Institute, Cornell University

“Law and Neuroscience is a landmark volume, at the cutting edge of law and empirical science. A handbook of legally relevant neuroscience, it contains worked examples of cases in diverse areas of law. Lawyers, psychologists, sociologists, philosophers, policy makers and students will find the book to be an accessible introduction to neuroscience, with thought-provoking essays on fundamental issues such as free will, privacy, deception, mental health, and the culpability of juveniles. Is neuroscience fomenting “brain overclaim syndrome” or challenging the legal system at its core? This fascinating volume does not provide easy answers, but it lays the groundwork for asking the questions that will influence policy and practice for the foreseeable future.”

IV.  Commentary from Other Fields:

Pete Orput, Attorney, Washington County, Minnesota

“Professors Jones, Schall and Shen have brought together concepts in law and neuroscience that are truly seminal. Much of current brain science is still in its discovery stages yet many law practitioners have sought explanations for their client’s behavior by seeking answers in this emerging field of science. This has forced courts, prosecutors and court psychologists to pore over recondite studies and apply those study outcomes to facts in their cases making for interesting theory but well short on making cause and effect determinations. This fascinating and thorough review of current brain science as applied to legal concepts such as mens rea is a must-have tool for those practicing criminal law. This book is far more than a legal text book- it is essential reading for prosecutors faced with daily arguments on behalf of unfortunately accused whose claim often is that “the devil made me do it”. A study of this book’s material should provide enough questions for the careful law practitioner to pause when confronted with studies purporting to discern the truth or motivation behind why people do what they do.”

Steven E. Hyman, Harvard University Distinguished Service Professor; Director, Stanley Center for Psychiatric Research; Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard

“This volume is lucid, factually accurate, and brings to life the many colliding interpretations of modern neuroscience in the courtroom. The pedagogical approach of the editors will surely engage students and should influence the teaching of this increasingly important topic in law school and beyond. This wonderful book will have great utility not only for law students but also for students in neuroscience. It is important for neuroscientists to be aware of the uses and limitations of science and technology in the courtroom and in society at large.”

Patricia Churchland, UC President’s Professor of Philosophy, University of California, San Diego

“In their magnificent achievement, Jones, Schall and Shen pooled their expertise to bring us a uniquely comprehensive study of the law and the relevance to it of discoveries in neuroscience. Easily navigable and illustrated by a memorable selection of cases, this volume should find a place on the desk-front and ipad of every law student, philosopher, psychologist, neuroscientist, journalist — indeed, just about anyone with any interest in the brain and the law. Yes, it is a textbook, but all the same, I found it a completely compelling read.”

Tade Matthias Spranger, Associate Professor, Institute of Science and Ethics (IWE), University of Bonn, Germany

“The recently released book “Law and Neuroscience” reflects the latest results and discussions in the field of neurolaw by introducing the reader to the still growing range of issues and, in this context, precisely outlining the relevant challenges. It focuses on extremely complex areas such as “the injured brain”, playing a pivotal role, inter alia, in the current renaissance of the brain death debate. This volume presents an invaluable source for all those who are involved in interdisciplinary discussions of modern neuroscience and therefore promises to become a new benchmark in the discussion of neuroethical and neurolegal topics. Notwithstanding its emphasis on the legal landscape in the US, the book’s structure also allows its implementation both as a research and a teaching tool in the international context.”

James Castle, Attorney, Castle & Castle, P.C., Denver, CO

“It is hard to imagine a legal textbook on a more complex area than neuroscience yet this book is so thoughtful and straight forward that it surveys the issues and the legal complexities with relative ease. Many of the questions that are presented are as old as time yet the possibility of neuroscience providing insight into these questions is fascinating and this book whets the appetite of the inquiring mind.”

Patricia deWinstanley, Professor of Psychology, Oberlin College

“Law and Neuroscience is an excellent coursebook for advanced undergraduate seminars. The collection of readings introduces a wide range of thought provoking topics. The book reflects best practices in pedagogy with chapter summaries at the beginning of each chapter that help contextualize the readings. Reflection questions throughout the chapters drive integrative discussions forcing us to think about the applications and extensions of the topics being presented.”

Fred Pritzker, Founder and President, Pritzker Olsen, P.A.

“This timely and necessary book will be a standard reference tool for civil and criminal practitioners alike. Trial lawyers (and judges) in cases involving traumatic brain injury, diminished capacity, pain and suffering, the use of advanced diagnostic tools and virtually any other claim involving brain function will benefit from this important new text.”

Susan E. Rushing, Assistant Professor at the University of Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine

“Law and Neuroscience is a timely resource for those teaching Neurolaw. The book is accessible to law students, graduate students and undergraduates. I am grateful to Jones, Schall, and Shen for this excellent compilation of materials on the brain, science, and the law.”

Stephen G. Cobb, B.C.S., Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer, Cobb Law Firm

“Every prosecutor, defense attorney, and judge should have a copy of Law and Neuroscience on their desk. This is the most comprehensive reference source available on this rapidly growing area of law. Decades of learning have been compressed into a fascinating, scholarly read that is a delightful treat for the brain.”