So much has gone on in the world but all this guy seems to do is recite disconnect factoids. Sooner or later it seems he almost accidentally might have driven a stake in the ground and drawn his own conclusion, what the heck, take a chance and be wrong.
A very interesting and cleverly written book. The narrator is excellent and really brings the writing to life. I've never encountered narration this wonderful before. I loved it so much, I've listened to it 3 times already and bought the book as well.
Addicted to Audible since 2009
Going by the title, I was expecting a history book but instead this turned out to be a book on science. However, it was still extremely interesting nevertheless and I really enjoyed listening to it despite my mistake!
This is a perfect match between a great author and a great narrator. The humor, sometimes sly wit, other times pregnant pauses as the narrator allows a few moments for the usually scary and profoundly eye opening point he just read to you to sink in. And there are plenty of those kinds of scary profound points. You will find it hard no to to be entertained throughout this book as the author walks along side of you nodding knowingly that "this stuff gets deep", describes otherwise complex concepts for the average listener to grasp, and mercifully admits when a concept gets too complex just after the point that it truly gets too complex. This is one for those who like scientific knowledge. One listen and you will have very educated things to say at a dinner party on just about everything earth, space, or the life process. Listen again and take notes (as he provides all sources and names and dates as he tells each story), and you will be the go-to person when people have questions about those topics.
Very informative; this book is a must for anyone who desires understanding of our world. I will be reading it again!
I would say it's not light reading because sometime one sentence has three facts in it, but Bryson's well appreciated, well polished humor makes every sentence a pleasure. Ask me about the age of the Earth, the size of an atom. I might not remember everything, but I can tell you a little bit about everything in the world now!
BTW, I enjoyed learning how human and quirky the great thinkers throughout history actually were.
From the remarkableness of our being here, now, in our present state, to how scientists discovered almost everything, this book is fascinating, informative, well read, and fun.
I'm an American and unfamiliar with Mr. Bryson's works. He is a gem! I loved the book. The sound of Mr. Matthews' narration sounds like John Cleese to me. Kept waiting to hear the "little machine" going "b-r-in-ggggg", and smiled all the time I was listening!
My budget only allows one book every three months, so I give each purchase a lot of thought....but I've loved all of Bill Bryson's travel books, and assumed (yeah, I know how that word breaks out) that I bought it without doing any research. Big mistake. Not a giggle in the entire painful 17 hours, 48 minutes. I swear that listening to a reading of New York phone book would be just as entertaining. If you like to listen to lots of big scientific terms and recitation of big, BIG numbers, this book is for you. If you're looking for Bill Bryson's delightful and humorous observations on life, run away....quickly.
A great way to spend some time thinking about science. A bit sensational about epochal events but otherwise worth your time.