I thought that having someone other than Bryson read this would be a mistake, but I was very impressed with the reader. Bryson's natural wonder and curiosity for things is infectious. He handles political hot potatoes like global warming with a "fair and balanced" aproach, and I am proud to number him amongst great Americans.
This one is great for the teen age kids in the car...educational and entertaining at the same time.
The title of this book sounds a bit boastful. Ok, maybe the author didn't cover everything but I can't think of too much that he left out. Do yourself a favor. Get this book. Now. There's two reasons. First, this is full of science and history that you just plain ol' need to know. Second, it will give you an amazing feeling for the vast amount that we don't know. If you think that we humans are really, really smart be prepared to be humbled.
I must say that before listening to this title I had little intrest in the sciences, however, this book was a truly enjoyable listen. As I read on, I became more and more fascinated with its splender and the fantastic wealth of knowledge presented. It has countless facts that will leave you in aw of our world and universe. The book offers a vast array scientific, historic, and theoretical information, covering topics from space and time to dinosaurs. Bryson, also does an excellent job of transition from one topic to the next and explains things so that anyone can understand them. It is finely narrated in such a way that is captivating and enthralling. I would recomend this book to anyone with a curious mind. A great listen all the way through, thanks Bill Bryson job well done!
Bryson's done it again (although this is a bit of a departure from much of his previous, travel writing). This book is amusing, engaging and informative. Narrator Richard Matthews has an urbane, literate delivery that does justice to this well-researched, informative, and fun book. One of those books (and voices) that pulls you in and gives you the feeling that just you and the author are in on some fascinating back-story. My only regret is that I wasn't always able to give my full attention to Bryson's prose (I listen at work) but on the other hand this just means that I can listen again and learn something (or lots of things) that I didn't catch the first time. I have Bryson's catalog on paper--now I'm adding his ouvr? to my iPod just as fast as I can.
Excellent, entertaining overview of earth/science history for the lay person. Bill has taken several very dry subjects and made them fun to listen to. The stories behind the scholars and scientists are what really makes this a fun book to listen to. Highly recommended...
This book is one of those rare finds that puts most others to shame. Brilliantly written and brilliantly read! Don't miss out on this one science fans.
Can't say enough good things about this audio book. Bill Bryson is the perfect narrator. Now listening for second time, and without a doubt be reviewing the material for the forseeable future. From the smallest to the largest known entities to man are presented in a format understandable to all. I now have a clear picture of the wonders of the Universe and lifeforms on this planet, and a clear idea of how all may have come together as we observe it.
I had such a fine time listening, that i went out and bought the actual book just so it could sit on the shelf. What a great book. And funny in that way only those with an english sense of humor can achieve. Listening to this book sparked me to want to devour any related books i can find!! Hopefully Bill will write a follow up and hopefully schools across America should use this book as required reading for all high school freshman!!
true: bryson tells us all important facts about almost everything, at least when it comes to natural science. really interesting anecdotes. but he says nothing about the other half of reality: culture, mind, soul, social sciences in general.
the unabridged book gets a little "lenghty" at times, probably the abriged version is more entertaining.
Anne in Happy Valley
Always wanted to understand physics and astronomy better, but studiously avoided those college courses? This is a good substitute for most English majors. Bryson tells stories so well; he makes science a good story too. As for Bryson as a narrator, his unusual speech pattern (perhaps the result of his having lived in UK for most of his adult life, then returning to his native U.S.?) was a bit distracting.