Twiddling my thumbs waiting for the next books in various series, I decided to take the advice of a co-worker, and give this one a listen. Reviews that start out like "if you've ever played an MMORPG or were alive in the 80's..." are correct - you'll probably like this book. It's a pretty fun listen - the keyword there being "fun". It's a walk down memory lane [I love/loved most of the referenced movies, games, music, and authors] but it is neither presented as nor intended to be some sort of documentary... This is a sci-fi story set in 2044 that even people who view World of Warcraft as "old" and have never owned an Atari 2600 will be able to get into.
And then, there's Wil Wheaton...who happened to be on one of my favorite shows that ran from when I was about 12 until I graduated high school...and...was...let's just say "not my favorite character". I've gained some respect for Mr. Wheaton since then, though still probably would have decided against getting this book if I'd noticed he was the narrator before buying it. That would have been a mistake, though...in fact...now that I've listened to it, I think he was probably the perfect choice. He has a good voice for narration and does a very good job, and...where some of his Star Trek cheesiness does show...it actually seems to fit.
I mostly read or listen to sci-fi/fantasy and leave getting my cosmology, quantum theory, and particle physics to the nice, digestible shows produced by Discovery, the History channel, and the like. I also really try not to use credits on something this short (less than 6 hours!)...but I'm glad I made an exception for this one. I'll admit I had to listen to the book twice (but enjoyed it both times), and that there are still some things this guy says that...I'll probably never comprehend, but wow...this book is interesting. The author also does the narration, which was actually good in this case - he's got this...sort of...animated, smart-alecky attitude combined with true passion and excitement for his work. I also like his attention to detail (or I should say attention to the right details - trying to cram all the details that went into this work would make a book like this completely inaccessible to someone like me) and his overall...take on science - that scientists don't know everything and how they should spend as much time trying to disprove their results as they do trying to prove them, etc.
Anyway - the book kind of brings you up to speed on where these guys are on figuring out...the universe, and presents some really interesting ideas on where everything came from (spoiler alert: it's in the title :P - but it's not that simple, trust me). If you're at all interested in the subject - get this book. Oh, and one final thing - Krauss doesn't say there isn't a god - just that there doesn't HAVE to be one - but it doesn't take a rocket scientist to be able superimpose god over what's being presented here either [translated: if you believe in god, this isn't going to change your opinion]
I really loved this series - could not put it down. The characters are great - immediately drawn into the story and felt connected with them. Assassins are awesome, we all know that, but this series is so much more... Extremely well written - and not...your standard, predictable story-line...
Get this one.
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