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A Brief History of Time

Stephen Hawking

Average Review Rating Average Rating 9/10 (1 Review)
Book Details

Publisher : Bantam Press

Published : 1988

Copyright : Space Time Publications 1988

ISBN-10 : PB 0-553-17521-1
ISBN-13 : PB 978-0-553-17521-9

Publisher's Write-Up

Was there a beginning of time? Could time run backwards? Is the universe infinite or does it have boundaries? These are just some of the questions considered in an internationally acclaimed masterpiece which begins by reviewing the great theories of the cosmos from Newton to Einstein, before delving into the secrets which still lie at the heart of space and time.

Stephen Hawking is as much in the headlines today as he was in 1988, when his book A Brief History of Time shot into the bestseller lists all over the world, staying there for some 237 weeks - more than four years. It has gone on to sell 10 million copiesand its incredible success has transformed the publishing of popular science. Hawking himself has become an international celebrity, constantly in demand on the global lecture circuit as well as appearing in The Simpsons and becoming the subject of documentaries such as Master of the Universe, commissioned by Channel 4 to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of publication.

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Reader Reviews

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Review by Sayantan (090809) Rating (9/10)

Review by Sayantan
Rating 9/10
A Brief History of Time isn’t a mere book, it’s a science journey to the centre of knowledge. Written by renowned scientist Stephen Hawking, this book gives us a plausible way to enkindle our intellectuals to the basic but incomprehensible questions that we find everyday.

This is a book of astrophysical science which gives us the scientific acumen to find the answer that have long been unanswered by the institute of science. What is the beginning of time? Where is the end of this universe? Where did the universe start from and where will it end? In spite of our daily chores, we have been trying to ignore these questions and leave them to the child’s wonder or a philosopher’s quest. But off late, a growing curiosity of general human around the space has been witnessed due the recent success of space-mission and moon-mission and that curiosity has inspired Hawking to come up with this book. An international bestseller and a critically acclaimed masterpiece has described the cause of typical behaviour of heavenly bodies in light of the theories of Newton, Einstein, Heisenberg, the greatest scientists of all time to name a few.

Hawking, widely regarded as one of the greatest astrophysicist of his time found the scarcity of a popular science book for every common people which shouldn’t contain any scientific equations and explain the complicated theories in easy way. This is a great enthusiastic attempt from Hawking to present the wide range of content from the celestial movement of stars to the inner core of smallest particle in universe and try to collate them into single binding showing the glimpse of the Hawking’s mind.

The tone of the book is narrative and passive in majority. Although, the book is rather descriptive and illustrated by the simple drawing to understand the general complexity of astrophysics, sometimes the book needs a higher level of attention and scientific interest to keep the reader in flow with the book. The contents of the book are well-thought of and meticulously divided into chapters to maintain the pace and flow of the book. The first chapter describes how people perceived the cosmic bodies before the modern era of science. It tells Aristotle and Galileo way of describing heavenly bodies and lays the path of modern astrophysics. The next chapter tells us the finiteness and relationship between space and time. The third chapter depicts the expanding universe and its attributes. The fourth and fifth chapters tell us the principle and properties of the particles that created the universe and every body in this universe. The sixth and seventh chapters describe the black hole theory and the singularity concept and the nature of black holes. The following chapter tells us the origin and fate of the universe and the ninth chapter describes the property of time in the universe. The following chapter tries to combine the science theories together and concludes the nature of human, God’s greatest creation, trying to unmask the secrets of the universe, God’s largest creation.

A Brief History of Time is a popular science book, first published in 1988 and from then, it has sold more than 9 million copies. It was also on the London Sunday Times best-seller list for more than four years. Though crippled by motor neuron disease, the ever-shining mind of Stephen Hawking has helped us to grow the interest in astronomy and has led the path to answer everyone’s wonder! This book is a must read for anyone who has crossed the boundary of general inquisitiveness at sometime in their life to seek for the future journey to the world of knowledge.
Sayantan (9th August 2009)

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