Monday, May 14, 2012

A Short History of Nearly Everything - Bill Bryson

Bill Bryson describes himself as a reluctant traveller, but even when he stays safely at home he can't contain his curiosity about the world around him. A Short History of Nearly Everything 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. The ultimate eye-opening journey through time and space, it reveals the world in a way most of us have never seen it before.
This book is fascinating. So well written. A friend recommended it because I have very little scientific knowledge and he thought I should broaden my mind a bit, and boy did it ever!

This book is everything that intrigues us about science without the dry-as-dust teachers droning on about it and making us abhor its very existence.

Bryson has a way of writing that immediately draws you in and keeps you connected to him the whole way through. You feel as though you're simply talking to a friend who is explaining the plot of a movie you missed. He doesn't assume any prior knowledge on the subjects he discusses, yet he doesn't talk down to his readers either.

There were the occasional dry patches that were a struggle to get through, although these were more likely due to my predisposition to dislike the particular topics of the section (blame my science teachers). However, I pushed through because I wanted to keep learning more.

If you're uncertain about reading 500-plus pages on all things science, then just read the introduction. It's less than ten pages but it hooks you and gives you a taste of the style in which the entire book is written.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys science (even just a tiny bit), but was turned off it because of school teachers.


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