Magic Universe

Magic Universe : The Oxford Guide to Modern Science

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"Magic Universe" brings current science to the general reader in an imaginative and wholly original way. It offers an exhilarating tour of the horizons of knowledge, from quarks to linguistics, climate change to cloning, and chaos to superstrings, presented as a set of self-contained stories. The stories are arranged as A - Z entries, but this is not a conventional encyclopedia. Each story unfolds in a totally unpredictable way, seamlessly crossing disciplines, and told in engaging, accessible language. Here is a celebration of the reunion of the many subdivisions of science now in progress. 'The magic of the Universe reveals itself in the interconnections', Calder tells us. 'A repertoire of tricks let loose in the Big Bang will make you a planet or a parakeet. In some sense only dimly understood so far, the magic works for our benefit overall, whilst it amazes and puzzles us in the particulars. Natural conjuring that links comets with life, genomes with continental drift, iron ore with dementia, and particle physics with cloudiness, mocks the specialists.' The stories can be read and enjoyed in any order. Perhaps you will start with Alcohol - 'genetic revelations of when yeast invented booze'. Or Prions -'from cannibals and mad cows to new modes of heredity and evolution'. Or maybe Higgs bosons - 'the multi-billion-dollar quest for the mass-maker'. Wherever you begin - and you can begin anywhere - you can be sure of an engrossing and a surprising voyage of discovery. As Nigel Calder puts it, the best of science is romantically exciting, and also illuminating - so why trouble busy readers with anything that isn't?

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Product details

  • Hardback | 768 pages
  • 178 x 242 x 66mm | 1,460.56g
  • Oxford University Press
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 10 line illustrations
  • 0198507925
  • 9780198507925
  • 1,408,096

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Here's evidence of a steady hand, a cool nerve and a clear sense of what matters...Nigel Calder is a science writer with a superb record and immense experience...Dip and dart. Malcolm Smith, Guardian A must for every student of science, and the ideal compendium for non-scientists of any age trying to keep abreast. John Cornwell, Sunday Times In this compendium he deals seriously yet entertainingly with just about every sicientific subject you can imagine, and many that you cannot...a solid reference source for many years to come. Independent Review

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About Nigel Calder

Nigel Calder is the author of dozens of books on science, including Einstein's Universe, Restless Earth, Nuclear Nightmares, Spaceship Earth, and The Manic Sun. The former editor of New Scientist, he has conceived and scripted many special science documentaries for BBC Television. He lives in the United Kingdom.

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