Bang! The Complete History of the Universe Hardcover – 16 Oct 2006
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This stunningly illustrated book deals with a complicated subject in a way everyone can understand. --The Independent --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
About the Author
Though best known to the world as the lead guitarist for the supergroup Queen, Brian May also studied for a PhD in astrophysics. Patrick Moore is the world's best-loved astronomer, author of more than 100 books, and presenter of the world's longest running TV programme, BBC's "The Sky at Night". Chris Lintott is best-known as the co-presenter, with Patrick, of "The Sky at Night". He took his first degree in Physics at Cambridge, then his PhD in Astrophysics at University College London, and is now doing further research at Oxford.
Top customer reviews
After a brief illuminating introduction there is a chronological account of the evolution of the Universe with chapters headed 'Genesis: In the Beginning'; 'And Then There Was Light'; 'The Evolving Universe'; 'Stars and Planets'; 'The Emergence of Life'; 'Into the Future' & 'The End of the Universe'. This is followed by a chapter on Practical Astronomy by Patrick Moore, biographies of key figures in astronomy/cosmology, a time line of the Universe and a useful glossary of cosmological terms.
Brian May, Patrick Moore & Chris Lintott have written an exciting state-of-the-art guide to the wonders of our Universe.
Holding this book in your hand, it becomes immediately obvious that a lot of effort has gone into producing it, from the "lenticular explosion" on the front cover, to the first class illustrations heading each chapter. The photographs of planets, stars and galaxies are glorious, and there are even a few taken by the authors themselves.
Bang! is more informative than most coffee-table books on this subject, but it still manages to avoid getting too bogged down in the detail. It does a good job in covering a lot of ground and covering it well, but there have to be limits for any book of this kind, and while it touches on some of the underlying science such as wave-particle duality, it chooses not to expand on it.
All in all, I highly recommend this book to readers both with and without a scientific background. The lay reader will find it an accessible read and an awe-inspiring introduction to cosmology. The more advanced reader will appreciate the work for what it is, and marvel at the photography. For those looking for something more in-depth, I would recommend Simon Singh's Big Bang, which is another excellent but very different kind of book.
This isn't a bad thing, however. It is an accessible summary that completely avoids the use of mathematics. It provides sufficient detail to capture one's interest and provides a solid foundation from which you can begin to consider the more obscure details.
Many of us have struggled with Steven Hawkins, but this suddenly makes the concepts of what we, as current mankind, understand truely come alive.
It makes one realise both how amazing and irrelevant we are, all at the same time.
A joy to read and absord.
The book is well set out with a logical continuity of the history. It is colourful with great pictures, but many times I was left feeling a little short of detail. I guess you can start with this book as an introduction and then explore each of the topics further in other books.
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