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A Short History of Nearly Everything Audiobook

A Short History of Nearly Everything

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Audible Editor Reviews

"Imagine if you can -- and of course you can't..." is how Bryson opens his explanation of how a universe is born. And he has the uncanny ability to not say too much, nor too little; to use metaphors brilliantly but without cliché; and to sound like he's actually learning as he goes along. Like Stephen Hawking before him, Bryson skips from one BIG topic to the next with the curiosity of a child and the patience of a schoolteacher. It's like having a front-row seat to the history of the world.

With his slightly bemused English accent, narrator Richard Matthews sounds completely at home in the material, chatting knowingly and with perfect dry comic timing. For managing to cover the universe and keep it lively, this experience definitely merits as an all-time favorite.

Publisher's Summary

Bill Bryson has been an enormously popular author both for his travel books and for his books on the English language. Now, this beloved comic genius turns his attention to science. Although he doesn't know anything about the subject (at first), he is eager to learn, and takes information that he gets from the world's leading experts and explains it to us in a way that makes it exciting and relevant. Even the most pointy-headed, obscure scientist succumbs to the affable Bryson's good nature, and reveals how he or she figures things out. Showing us how scientists get from observations to ideas and theories is Bryson's aim, and he succeeds brilliantly. It is an adventure of the mind, as exciting as any of Bryson's terrestrial journeys.

©2003 Bill Bryson; (P)2003 Books on Tape, Inc. Published by Arrangement with Random House Audio Publishing Group, A Division of Random House, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Not to be missed." (AudioFile)
"Destined to become a modern classic of science writing." (The New York Times Book Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (12723 )
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4.6 (7956 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Silicon Valley Geek 01-22-15

    Riptide360

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Getting dated, but an amazing story of Science"
    Would you listen to A Short History of Nearly Everything again? Why?

    A Short History of Everything benefits from most of the material having been in the past, doesn't change much. However new discoveries and insights means that an addendum should be added.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    The scientist that discovered Lead added to gas and CFC added to aerosols has probably done more to damage humanity than one could imagine. Proof that business and science needs stronger regulatory agencies and much more open and honest debate about the pros/cons of new scientific breakthroughs needs to be happening. Amazing at how big business fought off regulations for years - all to everyone's longterm loss!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gordana 01-20-15
    Gordana 01-20-15 Member Since 2014
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    "It surely is a short history of nearly everything"

    A fine book, well written and entertaining. He covers many areas without going very deep into any of them, but then, he delivers what he had promised: a short history of nearly everything.
    The performance could be better - if you've taken upon yourself to read in a book full of names of scientists, some of whom incredibly enough not from Western-Europe, you might wanna look up the names.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    david 01-14-15
    david 01-14-15 Member Since 2015
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    "AMAZING!!!"

    This book should be mandatory reading in high schools everywhere. If i had read this book during my school years i would have chosen a very different path in life. I was always interested in science,but many are not. This book sparks interest. And sparking interest is a teacher's hardest job.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    david 01-05-15
    david 01-05-15
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    "Where's the part about George Washington?"

    This book was outstanding. If you've ever found interest in wondering about the universe, or stars, or volcanoes, or DNA, or evolution or anything else about the reality in which we live, you will also find this book fantastic. It's about Knowledge History, or Big History, not George Washington or the Spanish-American war type history.
    It's easy to listen to for five minutes or five hours at a time. I can't wait to listen to it again. It's really good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bishop Gregory Griffith 01-03-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Enjoyable"

    Easy on the brain. Flowing and informative. I loved the pleasant voice of the reader and the content was fun and not to technical.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    O. Anderson Utah, USA 01-01-15
    O. Anderson Utah, USA 01-01-15 Member Since 2017

    Oli

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    "A Classic"

    Come on, it's Bill Bryson. You already know it's going to be amazing. It is out of date (naturally), but as so much of it is addressing the history of discoveries that hardly matters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Hoeilaart, Belgium 12-19-14
    David Hoeilaart, Belgium 12-19-14 Member Since 2016
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    "Entertaining Education"

    This was a very entertaining explanation of the history of science and our world. It is educational, without being boring or too basic.

    I recommend it for the average reader who is not already well-informed about science, but that has some curiosity. Even as someone that knows something about physics, biology, and chemistry, I learned a few things.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    uvejota 11-21-14
    uvejota 11-21-14

    Lectora todoterreno y bibliotecaria semántica, porque 2.0 ya no es in. Consultora en bibliotecología, libro electrónico y gestión de info.

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    "I only know that I know nothing"
    Where does A Short History of Nearly Everything rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Despite all good comments and ratings I was a little bit insecure about this book, what finally made me to give it a chance was the review of Patrick Rothfuss, one of my favorites authors, and he wasn't wrong. What an excellent reading, sometimes I felt my head was going to explode with a lot of information but every single page was worth to read and after reading it, all I can say is that science is pretty close to "I only know that I know nothing," maybe we never will.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    sweetmercifulx 11-17-14 Member Since 2016
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    "Supreme narration"
    What made the experience of listening to A Short History of Nearly Everything the most enjoyable?

    Richard Matthews makes it even more interesting than it already is ( that is to say, incredibly interesting).


    What was one of the most memorable moments of A Short History of Nearly Everything?

    His depiction of James Hutton and Charles Lyle


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

    Matthews reads as if he is has memorized the book. Absolutely brilliant performance.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Grant 11-07-14
    Grant 11-07-14 Member Since 2014

    Non-Fiction is my Jam!

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    "I have been looking for this book my entire life!"
    What did you love best about A Short History of Nearly Everything?

    This book is more of a short history of nearly everything scientific.The topics are brief enough that if you are like me and easily get bored this book changes topics every chapter.


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

    Of course! I was severely disappointed when the nearly 18 hours was up. I remedied my upset by immediately listening to it a second time. I have never, ever done any thing like this before.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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