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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 (794 )
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Story
4.5 (425 )
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2 star
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Performance
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  •  
    kathryn London, United Kingdom 07-12-12
    kathryn London, United Kingdom 07-12-12

    Kate

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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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    "Should be mandatory"

    Ever wondered why we know what we know or what hardships we're endured in the pursuit of knowledge that we easily take for granted.
    This book inspired me to empathy for how far we have come, who got us here and what it cost them

    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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    "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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    "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 Listener Since 2010
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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
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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!

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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
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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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  • Timothy Alonso
    2/16/17
    Overall
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    "Eye Opening"

    The lesson that I take from reading this is how lucky we are to be here. The sheer mathematically impossibility of chances that brought us here today is unthinkable.

    It introduces us to our place in the cosmos. The universe, the solar system and many celestial objects in the night sky.

    It then talks of individuals in history that have helped drive the progress of our understanding of nature to what we know today. Which is a lot but also not much.

    It open your eyes to the beauty of living things around us and also shames me to think of how much are now extinct needlessly by careless actions.

    It's an excellent read and worthy to be added to books you've read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jim
    2/15/17
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    "Very interesting"
    Would you consider the audio edition of A Short History of Nearly Everything to be better than the print version?

    I tried to read the print version a few years ago, but i never got into it, i found it a bit heavy going, i did enjoy the audio version, because it meant i want flicking back and forward cross referencing names and places.


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

    yes he is good, i imagine his voice is close to that of Bryson, and he felt calm and relaxing, but also authoritative


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    dont make a film form this book


    Any additional comments?

    i would defiantly listen to this again

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    2/9/17
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    Performance
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    "Immersive and inspiring"

    It really is a journey to quote the book on "Nearly Everything" from Atoms to Asteroids the book goes into exceptional detail presenting the reader with facts that will make the mind boggle! Narrator is engaging and delivers the book beautifully.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lesley
    2/8/17
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    "Amazing!"

    A superb book. Thought provoking and entertaining. Everyone should make time to listen/read this .

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rasmus Jensen
    Denmark
    2/7/17
    Overall
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    "Amazingly engaging"

    A truly awesome audio book. The book itself is a greatly entertaining and informative piece of literature, and the narrator is very pleasing to listen to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • P Hill
    2/6/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent book which I really enjoyed listening to"
    Would you consider the audio edition of A Short History of Nearly Everything to be better than the print version?

    I would personally as I listen whilst driving long distances. I actually bought the paperback for my father in law.


    What did you like best about this story?

    All of it.


    What about William Roberts’s performance did you like?

    I had no problems and enjoyed listening to him.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A User
    2/2/17
    Overall
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    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • mml
    1/29/17
    Overall
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    "This book is brilliant! it taught me lots"

    So much science memories from school came back to me. I also learned lots of new things. it's simply amazing stories of truth

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Andrew
    1/25/17
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    "Great book"

    A must to listen to. Thought provoking and leaves you realising the damage that we humans are doing to the planet.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    1/18/17
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    "Fascinating"

    Thoroughly interesting listen. The only minor downside is that some of the theories are slightly outdated due to the age of the book. Well worth a listen though!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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