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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just can’t put this book down….but had to post this review, 29 Jun 2014
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I wanted to applaud Michael Pritchard's avuncular, assured audiobook reading. I listened to all 19 discs, more than a day and a night's total recital, over a long summer commute. A poet-friend of mine who shared my hankering for a "physics for poets" version of cosmology recommended this. I figured hearing it would prevent me from flipping pages too rapidly when daunting concepts arose.

So, hearing this massive book word by word helped my slower pace. I had to rewind it often, as of course many ideas are challenging to the most brilliant of minds. That's the whole message of this book, beginning with the history of how we've figured out our place in the universe, and then how we have come to progress from Newton to Einstein to quantum mechanics, string-theory, and multiverses as models of refinement and amazement.

All the same, this compendium cannot be faulted. I learned more from its analysis of quantum entanglement and multiple dimensions than Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow's primer on M-theory, "The Grand Design". For depth combined with insight, despite or because of the effort this scholar takes to elaborate at such length on such complex material, as a foray into deep space and in-depth investigation, Hussey prepared the way well for me. I recommend this, as a deservedly popular introduction, and as a fine tribute to a masterful eBook presentation.

Mr Hussey’s enthusiasm for his subject does shine through his writing and makes you feel like you want to understand but you needs your wits about you when reading, however when you get that eureka moment it feels worth it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars COSMOS- Bang to Eternity and Betwixt, 26 Jun 2014
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Great book, daunting subject matter

If you're a layman and interested in the current status of theories in physics, such as the origin of the universe, the Higgs field, the tension between general relativity and quantum mechanics, etc., then this book is terrific.

I never understood why some people have no interest to find out what kind of world they live in. I want to know it all. I want to understand it all. After reading this book I know more and I can even say I understand a little more. What I can say with absolute certainty is that this is fascinating stuff to me.

All of the information in this book can be found elsewhere, you don't want to buy it for that. What you do want to buy this book for is the amazing way in which even the most difficult concepts are explained in a concise and clear manner. John Hussey is a true master at explaining the intricacies of modern scientific theories to common folk such as me. Theories that stumped even Einstein; (yes, that spooky action at a distance thing for instance).

This is no small task. Visualizing some of the non-intuitive ideas that flow from modern theoretical physics is quite a job for anyone, let alone a non-specialist. Hussey succeeds to an extent I have not found in other authors.

I had a great experience with this purchase and would recommend Amazon and this vender to anyone interested in these type of items.

He seems a true ambassador of physics and if we had people like that in every field, if one was in the position now to choose what college course to pick it would be hard to figure out what to study since all would be so appealing!

The whole range of subjects, the clarity with which even the most difficult ideas are presented often with a touch of humor and an enthusiasm that is contagious, made me decide to support the five star rating and write this raving review.

Furthermore, I also appreciated that the author presented many known facts combined with their more humbling controversies, limitations, and facts we do not yet know, all of this without getting biased, but nevertheless presenting a peep into what the future might bring.

All of this that makes this book a must-read. Sorry to say people, the list of books we 'have' to read before we die has just got bigger with one, so all I can say is; read this first while you can! I can only hope he will come with more.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Thorough science easily understood., 28 Jun 2014
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Essentially, as the title indicates, this is a book about cosmology - the nature and origin of the universe. In order to do justice to his subject in this quite extensive book, and as the subtitle suggests, the author has covered a quite huge subject area. We have Newton's Laws and Einstein's Relativity Theory, and a discussion of the incompatibility of the latter in some respects with another edifice of twentieth century physics, Quantum Theory. Then we have String Theory, which offers some hope of being able to bridge the theoretical divide.

We have come to rely on science as the foundation of truth and reality. However, the author notes that the overarching lesson that has emerged from scientific enquiry over the last century is that human experience is often a misleading guide to the true nature of reality.

The book covers some of the same ground as Hawking's seminal work for the general reader, A Brief History of Time (some 200 pages in length), but Hussey’s is much more extensive in its coverage and probably easier for the reader not familiar with contemporary physics: though that is not say that this is gentle bedtime reading!

This book will certainly give the little grey cells a good workout but, I found it fascinating and informative.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Cosmological Enlightenment, 28 Jun 2014
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This is just an amazing book. Easy to read, with good examples and really up to date information. Just amazing,

from beginning to the end.

As a junior high teacher, sometimes I find that most of my reading is at the junior high level. Hussey explains

the most challenging ideas in physics in a conversational and often amusing manner. Still, this book is not for

skimming - you have to think. There is no math involved. If you ever watch or read about science or science

fiction, you will enjoy this book.

I had read bits and pieces about quantum mechanics and relativity, but Hussey puts everything together in an

understandable way.
It truly is remarkable how easy can such complicated thoughts be explained. Great read for those interested in

the subject. The book provides updates of many of the current theories of Cosmology and String Theory, and

weaves in other concepts that are related including entropy, the arrow of time, etc. which give the reader a

concrete framework to with which to think of the work of modern physicists.

To me, the work is almost spiritual in scope, especially when thinking about a possible dimensionless and

ageless foundation to the universe. Hussey makes theoretical physics assessable for a broad audience. He has

the unique ability to make difficult topics understandable by means of crystal clear metaphors.

This is another fine and heroic attempt by the author to explain "A Theory of Everything," at least on a

physical and theoretical plane. Yet it seems to me we are a long ways from figuring out the hows and whys and

wherefores of such tremendously important areas of Life and Reality and the frankly semi-mystical / metaphysics

of thought, will, creativity, and the actual origins of the almost mind-boggling diversity and complexities of

life! Yet by all means: plunge on and press on all ye scientists and theoretical cosmologists! You are surely

among the great explorers of Truth and Reality. ... But please: never ever neglect the vastly important areas

of ethics, morality, Right & Wrong. - For without these as a foundation beneath it all: we will soon find

humanity floundering in a world of our own making that is cold, amoral, and even ruthless at its core. - Just a

little food for thought after contemplating the elegance [and dangers] of "seeing the universe from a strictly

theoretical and scientific perspective.
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