Buy Used
£5.58
+ £2.80 UK delivery
Used: Good | Details
Sold by Greener_Books
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: **SHIPPED FROM UK** We believe you will be completely satisfied with our quick and reliable service. All orders are dispatched as swiftly as possible! Buy with confidence!
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

The Knowledge: How to Rebuild our World from Scratch Hardcover – 3 Apr 2014

4.4 out of 5 stars 94 customer reviews

See all 11 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price
New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
£5.58
click to open popover

What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?

Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.



Product details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Bodley Head (3 April 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847922279
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847922274
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 3.2 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (94 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 203,084 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?

Product description

Review

"As the scouts say – be prepared! Say your prayers that you never need this book" (Bear Grylls)

"A glorious compendium of the knowledge we have lost in the living… This is the most inspiring book I’ve read in a long time" (Peter Forbes Independent)

"An extraordinary achievement... It is a great read even if civilisation does not collapse. If it does, it will be the sacred text of the new world ― Dartnell that world’s first great prophet" (The Times)

"The ultimate do-it-yourself guide to ‘rebooting’ human civilization" (Nature)

"A terrifically engrossing history of science and technology" (Steven Poole Guardian)

"Impeccably researched and beautifully written, The Knowledge makes me proud of all we humans have achieved - and dismayed at how much we have to lose. You need to read this book" (Stephen Baxter)

"Dartnell makes the technology and science of everyday life in our civilization fascinating and understandable. This book may or may not save your life but it'll certainly make it more interesting.

This the book we all wish we'd been given at school: The Knowledge that makes everything else make sense" (Ken MacLeod, author of Descent)

"A marvelously astounding work: In one graceful swoop, Lewis Dartnell takes our multi-layered, interconnected modern world, shows how fragile its scaffolding is, and then lays out a how-to guide for starting over from scratch. Imagine Zombieland told by Neil deGrasse Tyson and you'll get some sense of what a delight The Knowledge is to read" (Seth Mnookin, New York Times bestselling author of The Panic Virus and associate director of MIT's Graduate Program in Science Writing)

"A remarkable and panoramic view of how civilization actually works" (Roger Highfield of the Science Museum)

"This book is useful if civilization collapses, and entertaining if it doesn't. After the cometary impact it may save your life, and if it doesn't at least you'll know why you perished" (S. M. Stirling)

Book Description

A captivating journey of discovery and a quickstart guide to rebuilding our world after the apocalypse.

See all Product description

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I make no secret of the fact that I am obsessed with the idea of the apocalypse, and of post-apocalyptic society. For that reason, I am a terrible judge of post-apocalyptic literature and cinema - I even enjoyed the Postman. I'm also a big fan of books as physical, tangible things. So, a book like this is right up my alley.

In most respects, it is absolutely what it should be - it's not just a book that tells you about core technologies and processes, it's a book that highlights how much we take for granted about modern society. Every chapter in that respect is a humbling experience - I realised how little I knew outside of my own fields of specialism. That said, it's not an easy read - it's information dense, and parts of it need to be properly studied and digested. That's inevitable in a book like this, of course, but the corresponding impact of that is to highlight the holes in the explanation where the necessary thinking and discussion isn't fully joined up. I know the book doesn't legitimately purport to be a genuine start up guide' for post-apocalyptic society, but I think it could have benefited more from some proper coherent structuring and cross-referencing.

But, a book I found utterly absorbing and well worth a place on anyone's physical bookshelf. If there are enough copies of these around when the zombies inevitably come upon us, we might find things a little easier to start up once more.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A well written book, easy to read and full of good low tech ideas. If society collapses this is the book to have in your cave.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Very vague, its like an introduction to the book it should have been.
Comment 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I feel ready for armagedon
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Knowledge is power. Lots of info jam packed into one book.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition
This is a very informative book with a lot of fascinating detail. It is basically a thought experiment. If most of humanity was wiped out in the morning and a handful of people remained, could they survive and rebuild modern technology? To determine this, Dartnell looks how these technologies were originally developed and any possible short cuts which the survivors could take.

The ‘apocalypse’ itself described in book was very clinical but this book is not meant to be a blow-by-blow instruction manual. I couldn’t see survivors sitting around it deciding what to do on Day 24. However, it does contain a lot of high level technological insight that a post-apocalyptic Edison or Pasteur might find useful and could spend years of their lives trying to leverage.

The book is apolitical. Its focus is the technology. If you need advice on how to hang on to your post-apocalyptic fiefdom, consult Machiavelli, Sun Tzu and other experts in such matters. Oh, the book doesn’t cover killing zombies either.

Some readers might find the advanced chemistry section a bit of a drudge, but I can’t see how Dartnell could avoid that, given leaving it out would undermine the book’s purpose. On the flip side, it provides useful context for any fledgling chemistry students.

The footnotes throughout the book are consistently very interesting. I think any writer interested in world building would find the book very useful.

One thing to note is that the book is shorter than it appears. About the last 20% is filled with references, including a useful list of relevant fiction.

One final word of advice. If you want to tuck this away for the apocalypse, so you can amaze the other survivors with your scientific knowhow, remember to buy the paperback, not the ebook. Unless you’re really sure you can get those generators up and running.
Comment 13 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book promises much but does not entirely deliver. It seems to spend more time discussing what 'Knowledge' is required than it does imparting any. The book is interesting, and does lay its case well, but anyone planning to actually glean even a small understanding of anything mentioned within would be better off spending the afternoon on wikipedia.
Comment 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Nothing like as detailed or actionable as the blurb suggests
Comment 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Look for similar items by category