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A Short History of Nearly Everything | [Bill Bryson]

A Short History of Nearly Everything

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.
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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 (633 )
5 star
 (364)
4 star
 (174)
3 star
 (68)
2 star
 (16)
1 star
 (11)
Overall
4.4 (288 )
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2 star
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1 star
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Story
4.5 (282 )
5 star
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4 star
 (85)
3 star
 (22)
2 star
 (6)
1 star
 (2)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Justin Dandenong North, VIC, Australia 07-10-09
    Justin Dandenong North, VIC, Australia 07-10-09
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    39
    1
    Overall
    "The best book of everything"

    This would be one of the best book in Audible

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mike haarlemNetherlands 02-01-09
    Mike haarlemNetherlands 02-01-09
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    1
    Overall
    "A Short History of Nearly Everything"

    I have thoroughly enjoyed this book. I have learnt a lot of interesting things about our planet and been amazed by some of the facts. Bill Bryson writes in an easy relaxed manner that means you don't tire of the subject.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shiv 09-25-07
    Shiv 09-25-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    2
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Super stuff"

    Before I listened to this audiobook I had very limited interest in Science. This book has generated lot of interest in Sciences
    However a sizeable portion of time in sharing trivial information about the scientist in question. I thought some of these sidelight were a bit too casual and (probably) un-researched.
    Nevertheless a nice audiobook for my collection.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kerrie MoggillAustralia 07-21-05
    Kerrie MoggillAustralia 07-21-05 Member Since 2006
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    1
    Overall
    "An incredible read (...listen)"

    I found it hard to get out of the car while listening to this book. Every part of it was fascinating. This was the first of my Audible books and it will be awfully hard to top. Bryson manages to delve into complex topics but still be funny. William Roberts is wonderful, very easy to listen to. He delivers Bryson's dry wit brilliantly. This book has made me want to learn more about 'nearly everything'. Topics which have the potential to be dull are exciting and intoxicating in this book. If you listen to nothing else, you really need to listen to this. I know I will listen to it many times over.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christopher cranford, NJ, USA 06-17-05
    Christopher cranford, NJ, USA 06-17-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    6
    5
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    1
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    "Great"

    It's long, but worth it. Very interesting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark AnywhereUnited Kingdom 03-10-05
    Mark AnywhereUnited Kingdom 03-10-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
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    2
    2
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    0
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    "One of the best"

    This has to be the best audio book so far. Entertainingly read which is no mean feat given the length of the title. Although I glazed over on some of the details on details, every chapter unveiled the essence of "I never knew that !"

    Based on this title, will try others by the author and narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tonny Herlev, Denmark 06-23-09
    Tonny Herlev, Denmark 06-23-09 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    180
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    24
    12
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    9
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    "It really is a short story of nearly everything."

    I love this book,and i love the narrator William Roberts :o)

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Hugh PerthshireUnited Kingdom 08-19-05
    Hugh PerthshireUnited Kingdom 08-19-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    28
    1
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    "Inaccurate but never boring"

    This book is very well written but unfortunately represents the beliefs of the Darwinist religion, and not the facts on how we came to be here. This is a good example of the conjecture that is derived from scientific research, misleadingly represented as accepted truth. (Darwin's theory was defeated by Phillip Johnson in his book 'Darwin on Trial.')

    2 of 56 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eugene highveldSouth Africa 08-17-07
    Eugene highveldSouth Africa 08-17-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    16
    2
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    0
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    Overall
    "evolution"

    This book is written from an evolutionist point of view.As you know evolution is a theory and full of holes and major presumptions.If you are a christian with creationist point of view this is a irritating book to listen too.I wish I had glanced through the written copy before I bought this.Be prepared to filter out the facts from the fiction or spend 20 hours on something more productive

    2 of 60 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Prasad
    4/20/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fantastic effort on history"

    Amazing piece of work, must read for every human being. Last few sentences on extinction brought tears. Great read for everybody

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Nicholas Middleweek
    London
    4/19/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very educational"

    it's taken me over six months to get through it, it's super educational however I'd need to take notes next time. There's lots of scientific words and it's easy to get lost but worth getting through the mind boggling facts. Nice :-)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Vincent
    4/17/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Yuletideygyhnz"

    YahyAuYay By Vyv bI yowl haven zn yyho vpintI yucks itha y n U.yjS. K IOut. Not requiredrshy today. Fitz giving people the eye. Sean Quinn wandering around also.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • s
    4/14/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good fun but at parts hard work"

    Good fun and well read think it will take a couple of reads as some chapters went in one ear and out the other...
    But that could be just me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ewan
    4/12/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Another great popular science"

    A great combination of history and popular science following the birth of the universe up to modern humans. A must read for anyone who enjoyed "At Home".

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Peblet
    4/5/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "How it all began..."

    This book is ideal for bedtime listening. I fell asleep to its narrators voice on many an evening - after setting my sleep timer so that I didn't miss too much... because it really IS a fascinating insight into the origins of life on our planet. Nothing too taxing, but plenty to absorb. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • P. Barker
    Northants
    3/29/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An Interesting Listen Even For Non Science-y Types"

    À good effort to simply some complicated subjects. Well worth a listen even if science isn't normally your thing. Always interesting and often funny. Starting to show it's age a little now in some areas, bare in mind this was written before the boxing day tsunami, Japanese earthquake and tsunami and lots of other significant events in the sciences. But as said earlier, still well worth a listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Alastair Campbell
    3/28/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A great read, and re-read"

    This is a book just come back to every couple of years, it is just so packed full of interesting facts and ideas there is always something new (or at least things you have forgotten).

    It is essentially the history of scientific discovery.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Robert Black
    3/26/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wonderfully informative book"

    I cannot recommend this book enough to people. Also a great narration. Thank you audible for being such a great app.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Daniel O'Connor
    Sussex
    3/25/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great writing let down by over-zany narration"
    Would you listen to A Short History of Nearly Everything again? Why?

    Yes. There's a lot of stuff to take in, so I can imagine re-listening to some parts.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The speed at which Bryson gets through his history is just right. There's also a good balance between levity and awe at what people have been capable of in the past.


    What didn’t you like about William Roberts’s performance?

    He was overly conscious of it being a Bill Bryson audiobook, so felt it was necessary to read it as a comedy. It's not. There is the odd dry aside, but it's not half as whacky or kerrayzee as the narrator seems to think it is.

    It's a real shame, because the actual content is incredibly interesting and I hate to be taken away from it each time he reads something in a way that suggests an unspoken "Those lab geeks are whacked out, amirite?! Right?"


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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