A Short History of Nearly Everything

A Short History of Nearly Everything

by Bill Bryson (Author)

Synopsis

Bill Bryson describes himself as a reluctant traveller, but even when he stays safely in his own study at home, he can't contain his curiosity about the world around him. This book is his quest to understand everything that has happened from the Big Bang to the rise of civilization - how we got from there, being nothing at all, to here, being us. Bill Bryson's challenge is to take subjects that normally bore the pants off most of us, like geology, chemistry and particle physics, and see if there isn't some way to render them comprehensible to people who have never thought they could be interested in science. It's not so much about what we know, as about how we know what we know. How do we know what is in the centre of the Earth, or what a black hole is, or where the continents were 600 million years ago? How did anyone ever figure these things out? On his travels through time and space, he encounters a splendid collection of astonishingly eccentric, competitive, obsessive and foolish scientists, like the painfully shy Henry Cavendish who worked out many conundrums like how much the Earth weighed, but never bothered to tell anybody about many of his findings. In the company of such extraordinary people, Bill Bryson takes us with him on the ultimate eye-opening journey, and reveals the world in a way most of us have never seen it before.

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More Information

Format: Hardcover
WFTC1:0
Pages: 500
Edition: First Edition/ First Impression
Publisher: Doubleday
Published: 02 Jun 2003

ISBN 10: 0385408188
ISBN 13: 9780385408189
Book Overview: The incomparable Bill Bryson travels through time and space to introduce us to the world, the universe and everything.
Prizes: Winner of Descartes Prize for Science Communication 2005.

Media Reviews
The legions of fans who buy Bill Bryson's travel books and voted him a favourite author for World Book Day won't quite know what to make of the amiable traveller's latest offering. Transworld has dubbed it for all those who couldn't understand A Brief History of Time (and on that basis, if they all buy a copy it will be an instant bestseller). Bryson applies his naturally enquiring mind and his way with words which is both informative and entertaining, to understand and appreciate, marvel at, enjoy even, the wonder and accomplishments of science at a level that isn't too technical or demanding, but isn't entirely superficial either . This is popular science in the true meaning of the phrase and repays diligent reading.
Author Bio
Bill Bryson was born in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1951. He settled in England in 1977, and lived for many years with his English wife and four children in North Yorkshire. He and his family then moved to America for a few years but have now returned to the UK. He is the bestselling author of The Lost Continent, Mother Tongue, Neither Here Nor There, Made in America, Notes From a Small Island, A Walk in the Woods, Notes From a Big Country, Down Under and, most recently, A Short History of Nearly Everything. He is also the author of the bestselling African Diary (a charity book for CARE International).