In the Portraits in Science series, an intelligent chronicle of Curie's life, from her struggle to educate herself in Russian-occupied Poland to her successes in France; her pioneering work with her husband; and her troubles and triumphs after his death. While Pasachoff provides detailed explanations of Curie's scientific achievements, she paints an equally detailed portrait of Curie as a chemist-celebrity. Pasachoff's resolute concentration on the subject at hand--be it the gossip surrounding the Curies' Nobel Prize or the protocol for isolating radium--allows her to fold an impressive amount of information into a compact text. She provides background in history, physics, and chemistry; descriptions of the position of women in science at the turn of the century; and an illuminating analysis of Curie herself, whom Pasachoff treats with detached sympathy. A perceptive and informative biography.