By Tina Jordan
Updated May 11, 2007 04:00 AM

If you’re overweight, it’s probably genetic — and you may never be able to shed the pounds. That’s the grim news that New York Times science reporter Gina Kolata delivers in Rethinking Thin — an information-packed but — I hate to say it — boring book. She juxtaposes a history of dieting against a look at the latest science, focusing on the participants in an eye-opening study that compared a traditional low-calorie diet with the Atkins plan. She clearly spent a great deal of time with these people, and their stories are compelling, even heartrending; most have struggled with obesity their entire lives. Yet even their stories, bright spots in the book, cannot enliven Kolata’s flat, plodding prose. C+