The Plant Hunter

1/15/2023 9:33 am

The Plant Hunter 

by Cassandra Leah Quave

Viking 2021

A Book Review



Atlanta resident Cassandra Quave grew up in rural Florida where much of her childhood was spent either being ill or undergoing surgeries relating to a birth defect caused by her father’s exposure to chemical agents in the Vietnam War. Bacterial infections were a constant threat to her life. So it isn’t surprising that she set her sights on going to medical school. Physician heal thyself? 

The Plant Hunter chronicles Dr. Quave’s journey into medicinal research and her ongoing discoveries. The reader follows Dr. Quave’s journey to date as she lives with a disfiguring disability, discovers a passion for science and then plants, and then faces down the dual challenges of being a woman and disabled whilst succeeding in academic science. The book then pivots to its main focus:  the science of collecting and analyzing potential medicinal plants.