Renowned American astrophysicist Hakeem Oluseyi (born James Plummer) pens a gripping, gritty coming-of-age memoir, from young boy to graduate-school student, that will resonate with teenagers, especially those of color, who are facing many choices and obstacles as they navigate their young adult lives.
He was born James Plummer and grew up in poor neighborhoods where gangs were common. What set him apart were his love of the starlit sky and the mysteries of science and his off-the-charts IQ.
Despite the constant upheaval and turbulence of his home life, James devoured books, conducted science experiments, and taught himself computer programming, winning a state science fair with his project modeling Einstein’s Theory of Relativity. His thirst for knowledge would be his guiding star even when destructive habits—a crack cocaine addiction in college and graduate school—nearly derailed his dream of becoming a research physicist. Although at times he self-sabotaged his life and found the struggle nearly unbearable, he persevered and ultimately became a renowned astrophysicist, changing his name to Hakeem Oluseyi to honor his ancestors.
Poignant and hopeful, A Quantum Life charts the remarkable resilience of a boy who was offered few chances to succeed, but fought hard to achieve his dream.