As you leaf through this book you will discover that the author truly is a survivor. The last of his mother’s 10 children, he was only the fourth to survive infancy. He went on to survive the Great Depression, even though his father died at an early age and a sudden attack of appendicitis in the pre-penicillin era came within 20 minutes of ending his life. He also survived World War II, which he credits to President Truman’s decision to drop the atom bomb even as the aircraft carrier on which he served as a combat correspondent was steaming off the Japanese shore in preparation for what would have been history’s bloodiest invasion. And as a medical reporter he survived every symptom he wrote about – “from brain tumors to gangrene of the toenail” – to do such an outstanding job that his peers elected him president of the National Association of Science Writers.