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on 10 July 2017
good read very interesting
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on 14 February 2011
I read this book as a follow on from Simon Singh's 'Big Bang' which is absolutely brilliant. This is also an excellent book which gives some idea of why the universe exists at all and explains in understandable terms why there is now just matter and there is no (or not much)anti-matter. Fred Hoyles autobiography is also fascinating for anyone interested in cosmology.
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on 6 February 2014
Maybe it is time for him to hang up his hat. The cosmic onion was a great read but now he is just writing for writing sake. There is very little content and it just rambles on. I bought Neutrino at the same time and it is better than this but covers similar ground. A few bits of interest in it but not worth the money. Started to skim read towards the end.
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on 16 August 2009
This book acts as a perfect introduction to not just the world of antimatter, but also something of particle physics.

Close begins by discussing the legend of antimatter. A bizarre group of particles, often finding their way into Science Fiction, yet antimatter is real, it can exist, despite being annihilated on contact with matter. Close debunks what is false, and introduces the reader to the reality of antimatter, and the accompanying particle physics. A far from simple feat, having read several books previously which left me puzzled by Feynman diagrams, or simply what the particles are, Close takes a slower, gentler approach and succeeds in making the whole subject easily accessible.

The appendixes are very interesting too, offering some deeper insights into Antimatter, although some mathematical understanding may be necessary and can be left.
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on 12 April 2009
Books which attempt a popular review of a highly specialized subject are notoriously difficult to write. The experts will find little in them that is new, and the general reader will encounter much that is obscure and baffling.

This having been said, Frank Close has done a creditable job presenting the subject of anti-matter.

I personally was intrigued by some technical facts cited (eg anti-protons can be cooled with electrons) and amused by several popular explanations (eg How a space explorer should communicate with super-intelligent inhabitants to ascertain that their territory is not made of anti-matter: a wise precaution before attempting to land.)

An excellent book. I am glad to have it.
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on 4 March 2010
As a complete physics ignoramus I was a little concerned that I'd soon be lost when reading this book. Fortunately, Close does an excellent job of explaining the hard science behind antimatter without a: excessive deviation, or b: patronising and misleading metaphorical illustration. For such a short book it contains enough concrete explanation to keep you thinking, and enough anecdotal material about the history of this branch of particle physics to keep you entertained.

I had to read a few parts twice - notably the explanation of E=MC2 (yes, I'm that ignorant!) but I got up to speed fairly quickly (for the purposes of the book's use of that formula, at least).

Close is clearly a leading and very passionate advocate on the subject of antimatter (itself, I gather, only a small part (excuse the pun) of the field of particle physics) and offers a lucid and engaging read, and fairly mind-blowing for a newcomer to popular science like me.
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on 30 August 2011
I am a 17 year old student, currently doing my A levels.
I found this book extremely well written, every single detail was easily understood.
I have read various physics books to help me develop my knowledge as an aspiring physics undergraduate.
Frank Close does a magnificent job! and is probably one of my favourite physics books.
Going through the derivation of antimatter, the history, what antimatter tells us and the theoretical possibilities of its discovery.
I learnt so much from this book, once you start reading it you won't want to put it down!
Recommended to those who wish to have much more knowledge on the topic of antimatter!
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on 11 March 2010
Thought provoking, informative and entertaining..a great little book. Especially liked the small section on the Dirac code...clearest explanation I have seen. A great example that truth is stranger then fiction when it comes to physics..the real stuff is even weirder than the pseudo-science..
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on 8 May 2011
This is a nice little book about antimatter. Some may ask if one could write a whole book just about antimatter, but Frank Close does it well.
The book starts a little bit slow though, carefully explaining what antimatter is. Later it catches on, and the second half of the book is indeed very interesting.

The book does not only explain what antimatter is, and how to produce it, but also tells us the full history of how it was first discovered and up till now.
Frank Close show us what an important role in the whole world of particles that antimatter plays. The knowledge in this book should be mandatory for all high school students.
Finally Frank tell us about the antimatter we see in the movie "Angels and Demons" and the possible role of antimatter in the future use in spaceships.
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on 19 September 2013
While this book provides a brief and interesting introduction to antimatter and particle physics in general, it tends to focus too much on the historical aspect of the science, which in my opinion distracts from the explanation. Furthermore, there are too many ambiguous metaphors about 'dancing' which get extremely dreary after a while.

A decent book, but there are many better out there.
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