A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
The ability to translate concepts such as spacetime, string theory and quantum physics from high-minded theoretical gobbledygook into something I can approach understanding is nothing short of wizardry.
Stephen Hawking accomplishes that masterful task in "A Brief History of Time," which summarizes mankind's eternal struggle to make sense of the rules of the universe, dating from the ancient Greeks who looked skyward and made assumptions about physics that scientists would still be struggling to rationalize mellenia later.
That's not to say the book is easy to digest. As dense and overwhelming as a crash course on theoretical physics, there is so much to sift through that it's nearly impossible to retain more than the general ideas on the first go-round. I feel like I could read the book 12 more times and take away a multitude of riches from it on each occasion.
It's a testament to Hawking's writing skill that going through the book again and again would be a pleasure rather than a chore. Leavened with astute metaphors, a smooth, easygoing pace and an easygoing sense of humor, "A Brief History of Time" is a joy to experience. An eye-opener and thought-provoker, "A Brief History of Time" is a spark that ignites your passion to sift through the mysteries of the cosmos.
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