• The Universe in a Nutshell

  • By: Stephen Hawking
  • Narrated by: Simon Prebble
  • Length: 3 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 11-09-01
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Random House Audio
  • 4 out of 5 stars 4.2 (870 ratings)

Regular price: $21.27

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Publisher's Summary

One of the most influential thinkers of our time, Stephen Hawking is an intellectual icon, known not only for the adventurousness of his ideas, but for the clarity and wit with which he expresses them. In this new work, Hawking brings us to the cutting edge of theoretical physics, where truth is often stranger than fiction, to explain in layman's terms the principles that control our universe. Like many in the community of theoretical physics, Professor Hawking is seeking to uncover the grail of science - the elusive Theory of Everything that lies at the heart of the cosmos. In his accessable and often playful style, he guides us on his search to uncover the secrets of the universe - from supergravity to supersymmetry, from quantum theory to M-theory, from holography to duality. And he lets us behind the scenes of one of his most exciting intellectual adventures as he seeks "to combine Einstein's General Theory of Relativity and Richard Feynman's idea of multiple histories into one complete unified theory that will describe everything that happens in the universe."
With characteristic exuberance, Professor Hawking invites us to be fellow travelers on this extraordinary voyage through spacetime. The Universe in a Nutshell is essential listening for all of us who want to understand the universe in which we live.
©2001 Stephen Hawking (P)2001 Random House Inc., Random House Audio, a Division of Random House Inc.
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Critic Reviews

"Hawking clearly possesses a natural teacher's gifts...and an ability to illustrate highly complex propositions with analogies plucked from daily life." (The New York Times)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Adam on 02-07-05

Educational and yet fun.

I truly enjoyed this book. I love how as he speaks on a subject, Stephen throws in little tid-bits about his life (like where someone has sat in his chair at cambridge, or funny things about his daughter's birth).

I imagine the science and math would be hard to follow for people not previously "in" on some of the lingo and concepts, but he seems to break it down well enough though.

He repeats himself sometimes, I'm not sure if thats the reader making a mistake, or a typographical thing, but I noticed it more than once. Also, he reviews concepts he's already illustrated earlier, as if this book were written for students and under the assumtion only individual chapters will be read.

I love how he gives credit, even to scientists that differ in opinion from him. He breaks down to the almost stupid level some concepts to help you understand why they will work, or not work. I also love how he dives into the risky waters of time travel and religion as he talks, and explains. I'm sure many out there will have arguements with his logic on a thing or two, but who can argue with his courage to discuss the previously undiscussable (well, outside of sci-fi).

A great read, and it covers such a broad spectrum of space-science. I recommend it to anyone who craves to understand anything about the universe from black-holes to parallel dimensions.

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22 of 22 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Evie on 02-09-06

The Universe For Dummies

Dr. Hawkins did it right this time (no pun intended) with this book. If your eyes glazed over in an attempt to follow along and wrap your head around the physics theories in his first book, your are going to love this one. As he explains in the book's introduction, in the first book the chapters (or ideas) built upon each successive chapter. If you didn't understand after chapter two, you could not hope to understand chapter 3,4,5, etc. With this book, he builds the foundation in chapters 1 & 2. So if chapter 3 fizzes your gray matter, you can skip it because the remaining chapters stand on their own.

If you are a space time junkie that is fascinated by space time and quantum mechanics you are in for a very special treat. This man's mind is as special as the theories he explains. This is a great book. Buy it.

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13 of 13 people found this review helpful

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