This week’s review is by Jack – –
I’m not sure why it took me so long to get around to reading this. Probably it’s because I assumed it would be dry, very scientific and heavy going. Instead it turned out to be (mostly) the very opposite!
There were certainly a few places where I had to read and then re-read in order to get my head round some pretty startling and deep stuff. But Hawking leads his readers on a gentle upward slope through history while paying due respect to all his scientific predecessors, colleagues and contemporaries.
We begin with Copernicus and end in a black hole!
In many ways this book is an autobiography as it details Hawking’s developing theories while also occasionally giving brief glimpses of his personal life and its challenges. I loved the part where he gave up his PhD studies following his diagnosis and being told he only had a few years to live, only to get married and realize he had to get a job. So he completed his studies, got a job that became his raison d’etre and lived for many more years.
The writing style is pitched at the non-learned casual reader and is gently humorous throughout.
I particularly liked how generous he was towards others working in the same field – collaborators, colleagues and even rivals.
Finally, and most intriguing of all perhaps, is his frequent reference to a ‘creation event’. He is very careful not to discount the idea of a ‘creator’ with all that implies. He suggests that the more we delve and discover, the more there is to find – – –
All in all, a very well deserved best seller which I can now thoroughly recommend to anyone else who might have been wary, like me!