Nikolai Vavilov was a brilliant biologist, agronomist, and geneticist whose life and career were driven by one passion: feeding the world. More specifically, feeding the Soviet Union, whose early decades were repeatedly marked by famines that killed millions.
Trofim Lysenko, Vavilov’s slightly younger contemporary, was also a biologist and agronomist. He made a name for himself by claiming to have developed a technique to boost wheat production, among other innovations. His innovations were more hype than science, and some led to disastrous results.
The Scientist, The Imposter and Stalin recounts the gripping story of these two men and their scientific and political rivalry, set against the intrigue and purges of the Stalinist USSR.