Storm in a Teacup

  • by Helen Czerski
  • Narrated by Chloe Massey
  • 10 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Take a look up at the stars on a clear night, and you get a sense that the universe is vast and untouchable, full of mysteries beyond comprehension. But did you know that the key to unveiling the secrets of the cosmos is as close as the nearest toaster?
Our home here on earth is messy, mutable, and full of humdrum things that we touch and modify without much thought every day. But these familiar surroundings are just the place to look if you're interested in what makes the universe tick. In Storm in a Teacup, Helen Czerski provides the tools to alter the way we see everything around us by linking ordinary objects and occurrences, like popcorn popping, coffee stains, and fridge magnets, to big ideas like climate change, the energy crisis, and innovative medical testing. She guides us through the principles of gases ("explosions in the kitchen are generally considered a bad idea. But just occasionally a small one can produce something delicious"); gravity (drop some raisins in a bottle of carbonated lemonade and watch the whoosh of bubbles and the dancing raisins at the bottom bumping into each other); size (Czerski explains the action of the water molecules that cause the crime-scene stain left by a puddle of dried coffee); and time (why it takes so long for ketchup to come out of a bottle).
Along the way she provides answers to vexing questions: How does water travel from the roots of a redwood tree to its crown? How do ducks keep their feet warm when walking on ice? Why does milk, when added to tea, look like billowing storm clouds? In an engaging voice at once warm and witty, Czerski shares her stunning breadth of knowledge to lift the veil of familiarity from the ordinary. You may never look at your toaster the same way.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Everyday Physics Thoroughly Explained

As an university graduate with a Dual Bachelor's Degree in Biology and Chemistry, I enjoyed the simplicity of the science delivered as we see it in our daily lives. This book might be too daunting to those who don't meddle with science, but for those who do love science, this story will open your eyes and let in a new perspective in the world we live in. As someone who appreciates the physical laws that govern this universe and how those laws intertwine with our world, I felt at home with this book and let my appreciation escalate to a deeper level. I highly recommend it.
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- Amazon Customer


I love the approach the author took to telling this story. Although the science never dives too deep, and the concepts appear in a number of other books, the simple beauty conveyed by the author is well told. The author tells the story of the storm in the teacup through her own eyes, and with her own voice. She talks about how science has emerged to impact her own life, and career. It's a beautiful listen.

With that said, if you're looking for pure science "just the facts" this isn't the story for you. If you're up for an inquisitive, inspiring view of the world told by a lovely British narrator, you'll enjoy this!
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Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-10-2017
  • Publisher: Random House Audio