I am no scientist but I could tell that at least a couple of topics were not up-to-date, which made me wonder about the rest.
It's an interesting listen on the most part. I particularly enjoyed the chapters on space and the universe, and later on in the book, on how humanity came to be. Many of the facts are astounding. Some parts are a bit tedious... there is a lot of gossip-column-worthy information about many of the scientists, which I could have done without.
Warning: if you're not a germaphobe, the chapter on bacteria might turn you into one.
The narrator is good, besides when he's trying to do an Australian accent.
yes read and listened prefer to listen
too many to list
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great starter for anyone wanting to know more about the world and universe
I have just finished this book and I am about to listen to it for a second time which I have never done with a previous book. So many interesting facts and figures that they don't all sink in the first time. For anybody with even a passing interest in science and global warming this is a must read. William Roberts breezy style of reading is just right to keep the listener interested through what is quite complicated subject matter in places. I wish my science teachers at school had made the subjects this interesting.
I would guess that this is a good book, for someone who is not too much (or too deep) into science and wants to get an rough overview about various sciences and their development throughout history. However, for myself I found, that most of the facts and insights explained here I already knew from school. It covers only very, very basic principles. What I did like were the anecdotes about some of the important historic figures. That's why I gave it 3 stars: a bit shallow, but still a well written (and well read) book.
Outstanding research, enormous breadth without compromising on requisite detail, rounded off with sublime narration. This is a top 10 audible book to be kept and re-listened to over years.
Absolutely. It's endlessly fascinating and brilliantly put together. Alas, I first purchased the abridged version, read by the author so this version sounds strange to me. Bill Bryson has a much more pleasant reading voice.
Full of interesting insights and an accurately condensed picture of scientific achievements of the past few hundred years.
The oddities and eccentricitries of the various people was a welcome addition to what would have otherwise been a far less interesting story.
I found my engagement was steered more towards the sections I am personally interested in, such as the quantum physics and planetary parts, but I didn't find any part 'boring'.
One of my favourite downloads so far, there is something in there for everyone.
Well researched, well written and well narrated. A truly great audio book! This book is a fantastic base to explore almost any area of human knowledge.
The shear depth of the knowledge shared...
The colour brought through the people involved in writing the history... The rewriting!!
Periodic table... Did you know where it came from?
I went for 'A Short History'... because I have so much enjoyed listening to his later book 'At Home'. I've listened to the latter several times now. Bill Bryson's ability to turn a broad subject into a fascinating narrative, full of wit and personality, and an always evident delight in his subject, made 'At Home' one of my favourite audiobooks. Since my understanding of even quite basic scientific theory is quite woeful, I hoped I might find the same delight in his 'Short History...'. While it might take a few more listens before I really understand a lot of the information, the book had the important effect on me of feeling science is an area of wonder and delight.
I will certainly be listening to the book again - in fact the moment it came to an end the first time round, I went straight back to the beginning!
William Roberts' narration is good - I preferred hearing Bryson narrating his own words on 'At Home', as his dry delivery matches his spoken tone the best, of course. But Roberts interpreted the tone of the books well too.