Book Review: Moonshot by Albert Bourla
Albert Bourla’s book “Moonshot: Inside Pfizer’s Nine-Month Race to Make the Impossible Possible” gives readers a behind-the-scenes look at the race to develop and deliver a COVID-19 vaccine. Even though I am all pro-science, when I was faced with reading the book, I first thought it would be a form of PR to improve the public face of Big Pharma by extolling Pfizer’s efforts in the battle against COVID. I was surprised to see a different, brutally honest view of how things rolled out.
Bourla’s perspective as Pfizer’s CEO provides a unique and interesting angle on the story. I did not expect it to be so personal. Especially touching for me was the story of his upbringing. Bourla comes from a humble background, the son of Greek Jews who narrowly escaped the Holocaust. This experience has instilled in him a deep respect for human life.
The book is easy to read and covers various topics, from the science behind the vaccine to the politics and logistics of getting it manufactured and distributed. It challenged my perspective that “Big Enterprises can do anything given enough time and money.” In this case, many more things were at stake and bound to cancel the mission than we, the general public, would care to think about.
Overall, I found “Moonshot” to be quite enjoyable and inspiring. It reminds us of the incredible feat of engineering and ingenuity that is the Covid-19 vaccine and of the importance of science in our world.
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