This is a succinct, well written and very readable work with the illustrations tied in with the text in a rewardingly eminent fashion. Waffle is mercifully absent as the authors stick to the point line after line, presenting their case in factual fashion devoid of fanciful speculations. This book is a masterpiece in how to present science and technology in accessible form for the general reader.
Whilst the reader may not become as convinced as the authors of the existence of extraterrestrial life in our solar system, the authors certainly do succeed in showing that such life may very well exist on the balance of probabilities. The reader is taken carefully step by step through the established facts in such an adept fashion that it actually seems sometimes that one is there on the planet or moon looking round at what is being described. Except, that is, on Venus, a victim of extreme global warming, which may, nevertheless, harbour microscopic organisms in a layer of its dense atmosphere.
The work is produced using a sensible size print larger than the tiny print used in so many books these days, something that epitomises everything else that's so good about this erudite, but nevertheless entertaining, masterpiece of well presented facts concisely presented without any irritating digressions. The writing style fixes facts in the mind facilitating rapid recall when needed. Well done!
on 17 March 2010
There was a time when it was thought that life, in the Solar system, was limited to our Earth. Now human-lauched probes have kindled new hopes to find at least microbial life on Mars and maybe more than microbial life on Titan, and maybe some of the gas giant's moons (such as Europa, Enceladus, Triton) have an underground ocean that supports life. Those new findings are examined and evaluated along with their implications for life existing beyond the solar system. A fascinating, learned book!