Join the galactic conversation on the biggest issues in the universe `Don't fear change. Don't fear failure. The only thing to fear is loss of ambition. But if you've got plenty of that, then you have nothing to fear at all' - Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson is arguably the most influential, acclaimed scientist on the planet. As director of the Hayden Planetarium, and host of Cosmos and StarTalk, he has dedicated his life to exploring and explaining the mysteries of the universe. Every year, he receives thousands of letters - from students to prisoners, scientists to priests. Some seek advice, others yearn for inspiration; some are full of despair, others burst with wonder. But they are all searching for understanding, meaning and truth. His replies are by turns wise, funny, and mind-blowing. In this, his most personal book by far, he covers everything from God to the history of science, from aliens to death. He bares his soul - his passions, his doubts, his hopes. The big theme is everywhere in these pages: what is our place in the universe? The result is an awe-inspiring read and an intimate portal into an incredible mind, which reveals the power of the universe to start conversations and inspire curiosity in all of us.
For any task you might want to do, there's a right way, a wrong way, and a way so monumentally bad that no one would ever try it. How To is a guide to the third kind of approach. It's full of highly impractical advice for everything from landing a plane to digging a hole. Bestselling author and cartoonist Randall Munroe explains how to predict the weather by analyzing the pixels of your Facebook photos. He teaches you how to tell if you're a baby boomer or a millennial by measuring the radioactivity of your teeth. He offers tips for taking a selfie with a telescope, crossing a river by boiling it, and getting to your appointments on time by destroying the moon. And if you want to get rid of this book once you're done with it, he walks you through your options for proper disposal, including dissolving it in the ocean, converting it to a vapour, using tectonic plates to subduct it into the Earth's mantle, or launching it into the sun. By exploring the most complicated ways to do simple tasks, Munroe doesn't just make things difficult for himself and his readers. As he did so brilliantly in What If?, he invites us to explore the most absurd reaches of the possible. Full of clever infographics and amusing illustrations, How To is a delightfully mind-bending way to better understand the science and technology underlying the things we do every day.
**SUNDAY TIMES AND THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER** 'An epoch-defining book' Matt Haig 'If you read just one work of non-fiction this year, it should probably be this' David Sexton, Evening Standard It is worse, much worse, than you think. The slowness of climate change is a fairy tale, perhaps as pernicious as the one that says it isn't happening at all, and if your anxiety about it is dominated by fears of sea-level rise, you are barely scratching the surface of what terrors are possible, even within the lifetime of a teenager today. Over the past decades, the term Anthropocene has climbed into the popular imagination - a name given to the geologic era we live in now, one defined by human intervention in the life of the planet. But however sanguine you might be about the proposition that we have ravaged the natural world, which we surely have, it is another thing entirely to consider the possibility that we have only provoked it, engineering first in ignorance and then in denial a climate system that will now go to war with us for many centuries, perhaps until it destroys us. In the meantime, it will remake us, transforming every aspect of the way we live-the planet no longer nurturing a dream of abundance, but a living nightmare.