Rabi: Scientist and Citizen. John S. Ridgen. Basic Books, New York, 1987. 352 pp. $21.95.

Alvarez: Adventures of a Physicist. Luis W. Alvarez. Basic Books, New York, 1987. 292 pp. $19.95.

Tuesday is too nice a day to write reviews about scientific biographies if for no other reason than Tuesday follows Monday and Monday follows Sunday. Now on Sunday one takes a stroll through the grounds of the local conservatory, sits on a bench near the statue of Rimsky-Korsakov in Leningrad or outside the chapel at Princeton's Westminster Choir College and listens to the practicing students. But soon a fragment of a Bach two-part invention drifts from an open window to your ears and gently re minds you of the task at hand. You rise and walk on, hoping to shake the melody out of your head but the breeze carries it along after you from one bench...

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