A history of the uneasy commensal relationship between man and Mus musculus, the common house mouse (even the Egyptians struggled to build a better mouse trap) ends at the Jackson Laboratory in Maine where mice are bred for scientific experiments. The varieties of mutant mice -- hairless, dystrophic, cancer prone (all pictured in photographs) -- provide a concrete way to introduce the basic principles of heredity and explain how data from animal models can be applied to human beings. Despite the historical overview, the book is primarily a case study in applied genetics; other uses of laboratory mice, such as in psychological experiments, are hardly touched upon. Potentially gruesome material -- e.g. the use of noise to induce convulsions -- is handled with clinical coolness, and the ""instant mini-man"" once again proves his usefulness, this time as an educational tool.