Eye-opening… filled with… outrageous and entertaining stories… I walked away from Ravenous thinking of Otto Warburg as a sort of Sigmund Freud of cancer research.
—Sam Kean, Wall Street Journal
Ravenous tells the story of an extraordinary life, and of the visionary work that sustained it…. [An] exceptionally interesting and well-written book.—Thomas Morris, Times Literary Supplement
The research that Warburg is best known for today, and the work that forms the backbone of Ravenous, is his discovery that cancer cells behave differently from healthy cells in two very specific ways: They consume massive amounts of glucose — Apple compares them to ravenous shipwrecked sailors — and they eschew aerobic respiration in favor of fermentation. . . Apple covers everything from Hitler’s obsessive preoccupation with cancer to how the German Empire’s transformation into an industrial powerhouse led to a Romanticism-fueled movement that emphasized both environmental and racial purity. The fact that Apple can make these stories . . . feel so immediate is a testament to his canny knack for choosing apposite details.
—New York Times Book Review
[Apple] weaves together this complex narrative in a way that makes arcane science accessible and fascinating. The book is also thought-provoking for anyone interested in avoiding cancer — and who isn’t?—Marie McCullough, Philadelphia Inquirer
[A] fascinating new book about the link between diet and cancer… [Ravenous] has received positive reviews from both cancer researchers and general readers interested in how the way we eat in Western societies (specifically the inordinate amounts of sugar we consume) makes us vulnerable to cancer.
—Renee Ghert-Zand, The Times of Israel
Ravenous is a page-turner, and much of its success is due to Apple’s fluid, approachable writing…. A joy to read and an utterly fascinating tale.
—Juli Berwald, Jewish Book Council
A fascinating account of Warburg.—Sylvia R. Karasu M.D., Psychology Today
[A] spellbinding new work of reporting by science journalist Sam Apple. Rarely has such an array of medical troubles, historical events, bench science and political intrigue come together as they do in Ravenous.
—Paul John Scott, Post Bulletin
Apple . . . delivers a gripping account of biochemist Otto Warburg (1883–1970) and the origins of modern cancer science in his excellent latest. . . As he draws fascinating insights from the interplay between science and ideology. . . Apple keeps the scientific explanations easy to understand, while interviews with a slew of characters add color. This is a bona fide page-turner.—Publishers Weekly, starred review
[Apple] skillfully blends science writing with biography to present the story of this quirky, arrogant, and brilliant scientist, who revolutionized research on cancer and photosynthesis (how organisms use energy to make glucose)…. An illuminating account that makes Warburg (the man and the scientist) accessible to general readers.—Karl Helicher, Library Journal
A long-overdue biography of German biologist Otto Warburg (1883-1970), who won the Nobel Prize for his work on cell respiration and metabolism, especially as related to cancer…. A welcome addition to the library on the disease and one of its most successful enemies.—Kirkus Reviews