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Almost Everyone's Guide to Science:
Science isn't for everyone, but if you have even the faintest trace of curiosity about the world around you, Almost Everyone's Guide to Science will be a delight. Author John Gribbin, a cosmologist by training, is better known for writing such popularizations of the freaky world of 20th-century physics as In Search of Schrödinger's Cat. His choice of subjects for this latest project reaches new territory, expanding in breadth to cover not just physics but chemistry, geology, meteorology, and the life sciences as well; in short, he introduces the world as we know it. Challenging but not intimidating, his writing presumes an actively intelligent reader willing to pause and think things out from time to time. Like the best science writers, he knows that his characters are people like Einstein and Darwin rather than theories like relativity and natural selection. This human-centered writing style is absorbing and a little sneaky--even those readers pathologically resistant to retaining scientific information will find themselves startled once or twice by an odd paradox or brilliant insight. This mastery of storytelling is ultimately what sets Gribbin apart from most other science writers; if you've decided that it's time to survey what we know about the world, Almost Everyone's Guide to Science is the best place to start. --Rob Lightner [via]