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A Short History of Nearly Everything Audiobook

A Short History of Nearly Everything

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Publisher's Summary

A Short History of Nearly Everything is Bill Bryson's quest to understand everything that has happened from the Big Bang to the rise of civilization. He takes subjects that normally bore the pants off most of us, like geology, chemistry, and particle physics, and aims to render them comprehensible to people who have never thought they could be interested in science. In the company of some extraordinary scientists, Bill Bryson reveals the world in a way most of us have never seen it before.

©2003 Bill Bryson; (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"To read Bryson is to travel with a memoirist gifted with wry observation and keen insight that shed new light on things we mistake for commonplace. To accompany the author as he travels with the likes of Charles Darwin on the Beagle, Albert Einstein or Isaac Newton is a trip worth taking." (Publishers Weekly)
"Stylish [and] stunningly accurate prose....Brims with strange and amazing facts...destined to become a modern classic of science writing." (The New York Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (767 )
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Story
4.5 (402 )
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Performance
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  •  
    kathryn London, United Kingdom 07-12-12
    kathryn London, United Kingdom 07-12-12

    Kate

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Endlessly fascinating"
    Would you listen to A Short History of Nearly Everything again? Why?

    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.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Corey Eltham, Australia 05-01-12
    Corey Eltham, Australia 05-01-12
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    "A jump start to anyone's passion for science"
    What did you love best about A Short History of Nearly Everything?

    I was not sure what to expect, I had judged the book by its cover in a store and had never had the time to read it.
    Since purchasing this title I have fallen in love with the genre. This introduction to what drove science (rather than what science is) has left me researching text that I would have never attempted without the encouragement of this title.
    The narration is brilliant and tone perfect.
    This should be a mandatory text for all high school science classes that way we would all be exposed to it at some point!
    Enjoy, I did (and still am)


    What does William Roberts bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Tone perfect- invites the listener in to the journey.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Greg North Richmond, Australia 04-12-12
    Greg North Richmond, Australia 04-12-12
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    2
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    "Sensational, I have listened twice"
    Any additional comments?

    What a great overview of the world. For a non-scientist with a curiosity but no plan to research, this audio is sensational. William Roberts presents Bill Bryson’s words with clarity and personality that makes the 19+ hours both entertaining and thoroughly enjoyable even during the more tedious sections on mosses and the like. It has made my not inconsiderable commute pass with much more vigour for the week or so it took to listen each time and has made me that much more aware of just how insignificant and unlikely we humans really are.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    c Lantau, Hong Kong 02-09-12
    c Lantau, Hong Kong 02-09-12 Member Since 2015
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    12
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    "Interesting and educational"
    Have you listened to any of William Roberts’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Its rather more technical than most Bryson but good for non scientists. it seems up to date and a mix of the science of a number of disciplines and background on personalitites involved. I was expecting it to be read by Bryson but narration by Roberts was good.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terry Cardiff, Australia 09-14-11
    Terry Cardiff, Australia 09-14-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Almost too much information!"

    It is scary how much we really don't know about ourselves, the other living things around us and our own planet. To say that this is an incredibly detailed and thoroughly researched book is an understatement! With mind-boggling stats for most things presented, the insignificance of the human race and our own tenuous existence is reinforced at every point. Whilst I'm sure listeners with a science background would appreciate this book at a different level, I found every chapter engaging and fascinating. The entertaining narration by William Roberts is the "icing on the cake".
    Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stoker Austin, TX, United States 09-09-11
    Stoker Austin, TX, United States 09-09-11 Member Since 2012
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    "Fascinating and Enduring"

    We've listened to this several times. It's more about the scientists than the science, but that human element keeps it consistently accessible. And Bryson does a great job of making complex subjects understandable, while also allowing listeners to relate to the various concepts through some clever metaphors. And the narrator is absolutely fantastic. He could probably make a grocery list sound pretty engaging. Of course, this is better than a grocery list. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shimonti Duranbah, Australia 05-18-11
    Shimonti Duranbah, Australia 05-18-11 Member Since 2016
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    "Unmissable"

    This is something else. You will not want to miss a word of it but don't worry because the book is even better the second time round. Funny, awesome, finely narrated and infinitely informative.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Peter Mill Park, Australia 05-04-11
    Peter Mill Park, Australia 05-04-11
    ratings
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    1
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    "Pity about the narrator"

    I enjoyed the abridged version so much that I decided to get the whole thing. What a shame! The quiet, appealing and unassuming voice of the author which lets the text speak for itself is replaced by a loud, exaggerated character who sounds like he's doing a TV sketch. I just couldn't listen any more after the first hour.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Georgina Atizapan de Zaragoza, Mexico 04-09-11
    Georgina Atizapan de Zaragoza, Mexico 04-09-11 Member Since 2016

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A nust read"

    This is one of the rarest books that bring knowledge and joy at the same time. It keep you listening all the time and make you try to understand and learn more, in some way the only sad thing about it, that it was for me kind of short. I highly recommend this book to everybody. I read it twice and love it. I even bought the printed illustrated edition just to have it and see the pictures.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Peonyrose 01-12-11
    Peonyrose 01-12-11 Listener Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A short history of nearly everything."

    Bryson is awesome - so much information you have to listen many times to absorb its content. He writes in such an easy and enjoyable way - great if your interested in history and like it delivered to you in an entertaining manner. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • M. Collins
    UK
    11/10/16
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    "The thrill of discovery"

    As a scientist, Brill Bryson manages to convey the excitement, majesty and frustration of science better than any other book I have read

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • James Salisbury
    11/9/16
    Overall
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    "love it"

    listen to it at work. very very interesting. it makes me sound clever to my friends

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Florian Götz
    11/6/16
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    Story
    "Ok"

    Nice content, however its read so monotone, I had repeatedly problems to listen & focus.
    Interesting when youre into it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ben
    10/29/16
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    Performance
    Story
    "Changed my life!!"

    As people we seem to just accept the way things are and very few give any thought as to HOW we know what we know.

    I don't think I could find a better compilation of stories that tells us our history from start to finish.

    I'll be reading and listening to this many a time I feel. 10/10

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Varzoth
    10/25/16
    Overall
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    "Brilliant"

    Bryson covers every topic with a quick wit that makes it a joy to hear. Roberts also narrates superbly. I cannot recommend this more highly.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mark Collins
    UK
    10/24/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fascinating!"

    Very well written and researched. I learned a lot, and will recommend this to friends.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • kat
    10/19/16
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    "A must read/listen"

    I loved this, my husband loved this and we have since recommended it to friends who loved it. I can't recommend it enough especially if you have an interest in science but I think even if you don't it's a great introduction

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • J Jackson
    10/14/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Just not what was hoping"

    I just found it a little bit dull. Probably my fault should have done more research

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • S. Dolphin
    UK
    10/13/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Enjoyable, but dated"

    I enjoyed most of this book, but it shows it age in places, discussing past events as things that are going to happen in a few years time.

    Made me laugh in a few places, and educated me in others. If life, the universe, and everything are your thing, this is worth a few hours of your time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • James.C
    UK
    10/12/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    " really interesting"

    really interesting book, well written, easy to follow and well delivered. so many subjects covered it's hard to remember. so I'm sure it's one of those books worth a second listen

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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