Best science nonfiction books 2016

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best science nonfiction books 2016

The Best Books About Science of | Science | Smithsonian

Illustration by Maria Menshikova. W hat makes for a good science book? Is it an author who strikes the delicate balance between technical genius and relatable storyteller? Using modern science to predict future truths or believable fictions? Pairing clever ideas with brilliant illustrations? Or bringing together disparate groups — authors, ideas, both — that turn established thought on its head? Lewis Thomas won two National Book awards in for this classic about the interconnectedness of the natural and biological worlds.
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Dec 2, There's something for everyone on this year's list of best science books. Maria Popova, founder of Brain Pickings, and Scientific American editor.

The Best Books About Science of 2016

So instead of trying to reinvent yourself, why not read some nonfiction books to help yourself be the smartest, most interesting, well-informed person you could be? Add to Bag. Alexander Hamilton , by Ron Chernow Another mandatory pick for Hamilton fans; the book the musical is based on! In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex , by Nathaniel Philbrick If you want to impress with facts from forgotten tales, this riveting thriller details the shipwreck of the Essex, the boat that inspired Moby Dick! No matter where you fall on the political spectrum, history is history, and it never hurts to remember it.

Time travel, microbes, black holes, and polar bears. Black Hole Blues, by Janna Levin. Cosmologist and novelist Janna Levin tells the story of the century-long vision and half-century experimental quest to hear the sound of spacetime by detecting a gravitational wave. What emerges is pure signal from cover to cover. The Polar Bear, by Jenni Desmond. The story follows a little girl who, in a delightful meta-touch, pulls this very book off the bookshelf and begins learning about the strange and wonderful world of the polar bear, its life, and the fascinating science behind it.

The best writing makes you see the world anew, and science writing is no different. In his first book, David Biello argues that humanity has developed such power—but not the restraint to wield it responsibly. In his acclaimed new book, Atlantic science writer Ed Yong takes readers on a Ms. Frizzle-meets-Walt-Whitman-esque journey to illuminate a strange new world composed of trillions of majestic microbes. Here at the outer and inner reaches of the budding field of microbiology, we find mind-bending paradoxes: For instance, about half of your cells are not actually you. Multitudes, indeed.

Dec 7, Scientists are like those levers or knobs or those boulders helpfully screwed into a climbing wall. Like the wall is some cemented material made.
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A couple of weekends ago, the Guardian published its seasonal selection of the best books of the year as chosen by a roster of novelists, poets, playwrights, and the occasional historian. In response, the scientist and writer Matthew Cobb expressed his frustration on Twitter:. Two cultures anyone? Let us know your favourites in the comments below. The spectacular autobiography Lab Girl by Hope Jahren dissects the often brutal world of research academia in a manner so revealing that I worried the entire time that she was going to get sued.

It's a flat object made from a tree with flexible parts on which are imprinted lots of funny dark squiggles. But one glance at it and you're inside the mind of another person, maybe somebody dead for thousands of years. Across the millennia, an author is speaking clearly and silently inside your head, directly to you. Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people who never knew each other, citizens of distant epochs. Books break the shackles of time.

A 45th anniversary may be an odd milestone to mark, but prison reform can't wait. Thompson's encyclopedic account of Attica and its aftermath is the first of its kind, primarily because New York State authorities tried to suppress the truth from the moment the prisoners began agitating for their rights. Gripping storytelling and scrupulous research undergird this outstanding ethnographic study in which Desmond, a professor of sociology at Harvard, explores the impact of eviction on poor families in Milwaukee, Wis. Focusing on eight families in varying circumstances, Desmond adds depth and immediacy to the role of housing in the creation of poverty in America. This is a mesmerizing and agile biography of the 19th century English writer, best known for the autobiographical Confessions of an English Opium-Eater. Wilson captures De Quincey's multifaceted personality and career—as obsessive literary stalker, "born journalist," and visionary author, as well as his continuing influence on our own time. Partlow, a veteran foreign correspondent, gives an excellent account of a vastly difficult topic, exploring America's entanglement with Afghanistan, our country's longest war, in terms of U.

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