Without a doubt, the BEST science related book I have ever come across. I'm currently on my third listen to this audio. There are just so many fascinating facts delivered by a great narrator that it is impossible to gleen all of them on one pass.
A must have. Should be required reading in high school.
I approached this long book with a bit of dread, not because of Bryson but because it was.....long - and "everything". Well, not to worry. He really did his homework on this book and it is his usual "walk" through a subject but this time it is ideas and he brings an ability to put science and nature into understandable terms - and I thought I knew it pretty well before this book. But Bryson also brings humor, wit, and irony to the subjects and does so with allusions to arcane history, offbeat characters, and a sense of when things are enough on a particular topic. Much more fun than I had anticipated and have recommended it to many.
"A Short History..." is everything I want a nonfiction book to be. It was enlightening, humorous, and engaging. Mr. Bryson presents a wide range of topics in science with enough detail to truly educate, yet not so much as to overwhelm. The book presents not only a history of the scientific understanding of nearly everything, but insights into the people who have discovered new insights and how they explained their discoveries in the context of their own lives and beliefs. This book is educational and entertaining at the same time. I hated for it to end.
This book was awesome! Bill Bryson does a great job keeping a highly technical and seeming dull topic interesting and humorous. Not a book for everyone but definitely for anyone who has an interest in the natural sciences.
I loved it. The speaker does a great job and the book is rich in scientific history. I found it fascinating and informative.
A very entertaining way to learn amazing things about our world. Totally for the non-scientist. Bryson is a great author. Check out his other work too.
This is one of my favorite books it is so full of interesting scientific facts that I have thoroughly enjoyed listening to it TWICE. After listening to it once I picked it up about six months latter and got into it again and each time I walk away with new knowledge. His writing makes science what it should be Interesting! Fascinating! And Captivating
This was a very enjoyable book but that's because I enjoy learning about science. Make no mistake about this book - it's still a science book and you have to be ready for it. Some of the reviews made it seem like it was more "trivial" info. It's definitely heavy on the science.
I initially started reading the paper copy of this book, and I loved it, but I didn't have enough time to read it as much as I wanted to, so I downloaded the unabridged audio version. I'm so glad I did.
Bill Bryson set out with the premise that science is fascinating stuff, but it's a shame that science writers seem determined to make it droll and boring. He spent some time researching and produced a highly readable, very educational, and still entertaining tour of not only scientific knowledge, but also the epistemology (HOW do we know what we know?). The profiles of science's most prominent characters are truly interesting.
Bryson is a writer at heart, and I was consistently impressed with his unique and sometimes quirky turns of phrase. The narrator, too, contributed to my enjoyment of the book without stealing the show.