Wishful Wednesday, 29 September

The meme is hosted by Brooke Bluestocking Guide.
Sometimes I feel rather stupid when it comes to scence so this week I wish I could get “A Short History of Nearly Everything” by Bill Bryson.

Cover of Cover of A Short History of Nearly Everything

From Publishers Weekly:

“As the title suggests, bestselling author Bryson (In a Sunburned Country) sets out to put his irrepressible stamp on all things under the sun. As he states at the outset, this is a book about life, the universe and everything, from the Big Bang to the ascendancy of Homo sapiens. “This is a book about how it happened,” the author writes. “In particular how we went from there being nothing at all to there being something, and then how a little of that something turned into us, and also what happened in between and since.” What follows is a brick of a volume summarizing moments both great and curious in the history of science, covering already well-trod territory in the fields of cosmology, astronomy, paleontology, geology, chemistry, physics and so on. Bryson relies on some of the best material in the history of science to have come out in recent years. This is great for Bryson fans, who can encounter this material in its barest essence with the bonus of having it served up in Bryson’s distinctive voice. But readers in the field will already have studied this information more in-depth in the originals and may find themselves questioning the point of a breakneck tour of the sciences that contributes nothing novel. Nevertheless, to read Bryson is to travel with a memoirist gifted with wry observation and keen insight that shed new light on things we mistake for commonplace. To accompany the author as he travels with the likes of Charles Darwin on the Beagle, Albert Einstein or Isaac Newton is a trip worth taking for most readers.”


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10 Responses to Wishful Wednesday, 29 September

  1. This one sounds very interesting. I can't remember where I saw this advertised though.

  2. anachronist says:

    I've heard rumours about that one for quite a long time too.

  3. Tracy says:

    This one is wonderful, anachronist – highly recommended. If you're only going to read one popular science book this year, then this is definitely the best one to start with. The reviewer is right that 'it contributes nothing novel' but that isn't the point of it – this book isn't aimed at scientists, it's aimed squarely at people who are interested in science, but don't know much about it, or only know a little about one field and not others.

  4. anachronist says:

    this book isn't aimed at scientists, it's aimed squarely at people who are interested in science, but don't know much about it, or only know a little about one field and not others. Sounds like a perfect book for me! I'll try to find it!

  5. Maybe I'll buy one for my son as a Christmas present.

  6. Tracy says:

    It's written in Bryson's usual style, and it's very entertaining as well as being informative.

  7. anachronist says:

    You really encouraged me to find this one, Tracy, thanks!

  8. Deepali says:

    I love Bill Bryson, and this book is definitely in his style. Its a good popular science book, and you can always read it in parts..it was pretty long :)-Dee from http://readseverything.blogspot.com/P.S. Thank you for listing me on your blogroll – I hope you win the contest ;)(and no, I do not tell everyone that!)

  9. anachronist says:

    Apparently my lack of luck holds, Deepali but thanks for your wishes!

  10. Deepali says:

    Hi anachronist ! There is still a chance :)I'm announcing the winner tomorrow, sorry about the delay in the winner announcement..it took me ages to visit everyone's pages and verify their counts.Just going to random.org now 😀

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