A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson

A Short History of Nearly Everything

In Bryson's biggest book, he confronts his greatest challenge: to understand—and, if possible, answer—the oldest, biggest questions we have posed about the universe and ourselves. Taking as territory everything from the Big Bang to the rise of civilization, Bryson seeks to understand how we got from there being nothing at all to there being us. To that end, he has attached himself to a host of the world’s most advanced (and often obsessed) ...

Details A Short History of Nearly Everything

TitleA Short History of Nearly Everything
Release DateSep 14th, 2004
PublisherBroadway Books
GenreNonfiction, Science, History, Audiobook

Reviews A Short History of Nearly Everything

  • Manny
    A Short History of GoodreadsSurveys show that nearly 40% of all Americans believe the history of literature started in 2007, when Amazon sold the first Kindle; indeed, Amazon Fundamentalists hold it as an article of faith that Jeff Bezos actually wrote all the world's e-books over a period of six days. This is, of course, nonsense. It has been conclusively demonstrated that literature is far older than the Kindle; books already existed thousands ...
  • Jamie
    Good grief if I had even one textbook half this enthralling in high school, who knows what kind of impassioned -ologist I would have grown up to be. I hereby petition Bryson to re-write all curriculum on behalf of the history of the world.I would run across things half-remembered from midterms and study guides and think, "You mean this is what they were talking about? You have got to be kidding me." It's never condescending, always a joy.In fact,...
  • Paul Bryant
    Okay, so here's my Bill Bryson story. I was in The Gladstone, a public house not too far from this very keyboard, with my friend Yvonne, who will remain nameless. We had been imbibing more than freely. A guy approached our table and asked me in a sly surreptitious manner if I was him. Him who? Was I Bill Bryson? Now it is true that I bear a very slight resemblancebut you could also say that about Bjorn from Abbaand a zillion other white guys with...
  • Grace Tjan
    What I learned from this book (in no particular order)1. Phosphor was accidentally discovered when a scientist tried to turn human urine into gold. The similarity in color seemed to have been a factor in his conviction that this was possible. Like, duh. I’m no scientist, but shouldn’t it be obvious enough?2. “In the early 1800s there arose in England a fashion for inhaling nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, after it was discovered that its use...
  • Sarah
    Bryson's dead serious: this is a history of pretty much everything there is -- the planet, the solar system, the universe -- as well as a history of how we've come to know as much as we do. A book on science written by a non-scientist, this a perfect bridge between the humanities and the natural sciences. A course in the history of science should be mandatory for every teenager, and this should be the textbook.Yes, it's a big, chunky book. No, it...
  • Mohammed-Makram
    يحكى أن يهوديا قرر الذهاب إلى دمياط للتجارة و حينما وصل إليها أراد اختبار أهلها قبل أن يبدأ مشروعه فأشار للصبى الذى أستأجره ليكون دليلا لهخذ هذا القرش فاشتر لنا غداء و شراب و حلوى و لا تنسى طعام للحمار و شيئا أتسلى به فى طريقىكان القرش لا يشترى بالك...
  • Manny
    It's easy to nitpick A Short History of Nearly Everything. Bryson, by his own cheerful admission anything but a scientist, makes a fair number of mistakes. He says that all living creatures contain hox genes; he omits Alexander Friedmann and George Gamow from his description of how the Big Bang theory was developed; when talking about Darwin and Paley, he doesn't seem to be aware that Natural Theology was one of Darwin's favorite books and had a ...
  • Patrick
    Picked this up on audiobook when I was on tour and listened to it in my car. I found it fascinating and informative. Kinda like a reader's digest version of the history of science. And even though I knew a fair chunk of what was mention, there was a lot of material I'd never even had a glimmer of before. Fair warning: If you are prone to worry about, say, the end of the world. This probably isn't the book for you.
  • Dan Schwent
    A Short History of Nearly Everything is Bill Bryson's summation of life, the universe, and everything, a nice little easy-reading science book containing an overview of things every earthling should be aware of.As I've repeatedly mentioned over the years, every time one of the casual-readers tells me I have to read something, like Harry Potter or the DaVinci Code, I dig my feet in deeper and resolve to never read it. This is one of the occasions ...
  • Ahmad Sharabiani
    A Short History of Nearly Everything, Bill BrysonA Short History of Nearly Everything by American author Bill Bryson is a popular science book that explains some areas of science, using easily accessible language that appeals more so to the general public than many other books dedicated to the subject. It was one of the bestselling popular science books of 2005 in the United Kingdom, selling over 300,000 copies.عنوانها: تاریخچه تق...
  • Foster
    This is one of the most enjoyable books I have ever read. There, I said itBryson's book combines the best qualities of science writers like Attenborough, Diamond, Durrell, and Wilson; presenting the information with the wit he is most known for. It is an amazing achievement to condense the entire base of human scientific knowledge into 478 pages, but Bryson has done it. I completely agree with Tim Flannery, who writes on the jacket that "all scho...
  • Andrew Smith
    I was never any good at science. At the grammar school I attended we were shepherded into laboratories for lessons on physics, chemistry and biology. These were scary places; I’d never been anywhere like this before. The physics lab had gas taps and Bunsen burners and the walls were filled with incomprehensible charts. The chemistry lab held rows of specimen jars, more gas taps and burners and an underlying smell of something unpleasant and vag...
  • Miranda Reads
    Want a whirlwind worldwide romance adventure minus the romance? This is the book for you.This book really does cover nearly everything. From the Big Bang to current life on earth, Bill Bryson does wonderful job of breaking down complex theories and concepts to their essential message: Protons give an atom its identity, electrons its personality. Though, sometimes he gets a bit wordy. Not one of your pertinent ancestors was squashed, devoured, dr...
  • فهد الفهد
    موجز تاريخ كل شيء تقريباً رغم الترجمة التي تكبو أحياناً، ورغم ما يقال بأن هناك فصل سقط في الترجمة!! إلا أن هذا كتاب عظيم بحق، عمل مبهر ولذيذ، وضع بيل برايسون هذا الكتاب للإجابة على الأسئلة العلمية التي يجهلها حول الأرض والطبيعة بشكل عام، هذه الأسئل...
  • Dem
    2.5 Stars This is probably going to make me sound as thick as two short planks but I didn't like it, I knew going into this book that it was going to be a challenge as Science is not really my preferred bedtime reading but I do think its good to try new things but unfortunately yes this was just hard work for me and I struggled through this one. But on the plus side I did learn some STUFF just dont ASK me to EXPLAIN it to you and it did encourage...
  • Olive (abookolive)
    Well deserving of its popularity and praise, this book manages to be fun even though it contains a massive amount of information delivered at a rapid rate. The title is hyperbolic; this is an introduction to scientific building blocks that will give the reader a basic understanding about the world, our place within it, and of the history behind major scientific discoveries. Though it has the ability to make one feel overwhelmed, I think it has an...
  • Obied Alahmed
    "تبارك الله أحسن الخالقين"هذا ما ستنطقه شفتاك حين تنتهي من كل فصل من فصول هذا الكتاب ستشعر بكم العجز الذي نحن فيه ليس لنصنع أو نبتكر انما فقط لنفهم كيف تسير الأمور في هذا الكونستجد من بين السطور مقولات كهذه " إنه عالم يتجاوز الفهم بالنسبة لمعظمنا "وب...
  • Greta
    A short history of nearly everythingThis is a remarkable accomplishment. From the author, of course, but also from me, to have read it. I'm not a scientist, so when I started reading this book, I expected that I would skip some parts. But I didn't ; I read every single page of this highly readable and enjoyable book. I won't bother you with all the scientific stuff I learned. Instead, I compiled a top 5 list of the frightful fates of some scienti...
  • Otis Chandler
    A fascinating history of science. Ever curious how everything we know about the world came to be - read this! I loved reading about what old greats like Darwin thought about the world - they were all right about most things, but also very wrong about some things - makes you wonder how much we are wrong about today!Another interesting piece was how many of the world's prominent scientists had the time to do their research because they came from ri...
  • Jonathan Ashleigh
    The best thing about this book is that it introduces other books you would like. It showed me that I should probably read more about Newton and Einstein, and that astronomy is something that I am still interested in. I did find myself scanning through certain sections because I already understood them well (the vastness of the universe) or I don't think I will ever understand them (complicated aspects of biology). Like all science book, they get ...
  • Amir
    از عنوان شروع کنیمعنوان کتاب تقریبا گویای همهچیز هست. نویسنده نزدیک سه سال به شکل حیرتآوری حجم عظیمی از کتابهای علمی توی رشتههای مختلف رو خونده و به جاهای مختلف سر زده و تقریبا توی تمام شاخههای اصلی علم روز دنیا حداقل سی چهل صفحهای نوشتهآیا این کتاب...
  • Riku Sayuj
    Stunning in scope and execution. Loved every page of it, even geology was made exciting. That really is some feat.
  • Dave Gaston
    First off, this is a huge departure from Bryson's breezy, excellent travel logs. Secondly, this book should be read with some frequency. It is so densely packed with valuable insight, and sound bites of discovery that you could not possibly absorb it all with one pass. This is my second time reading it and I plan on doing it again next year. The organizational structure is a wonderful series of loosely connected cameos covering several essential ...
  • Roberto
    Battaglia per la TerraSono sempre stato convinto che non sia necessario utilizzare tante parole complicate per illustrare concetti complessi a chi non li conosce. Bisogna solo comprenderli bene prima di accingersi a spiegarli.Ecco, Bill Bryson è uno che non solo ha capito bene i fenomeni che spiega, ma ha anche capito come comunicarceli efficacemente.Con ironia, con aneddoti interessanti, con la capacità di sottolineare le cose più curiose e c...
  • D'Argo Agathon
    Oh my gods, what a waste of perfectly good paper! I am flabbergasted that this has such consistently high reviews...Three problems with this tripe: 1. falsity of the science (most blatantly around cosmology, but not limited to any one field) and misunderstanding of scientific principles;2. a focus more on "biography" rather than on real "history";3. trivial worthlessness of the information.Number 1 is briefly chronicled below. Within just the fir...
  • Diane
    I must admit that science is not my strong suit -- I've always been more of a Humanities gal. In high school, I had to work harder in my biology and chemistry classes, whereas English, history and social studies always came more easily to me.Bill Bryson's "A Short History of Nearly Everything" is a good overview of all the science classes I didn't take (or don't remember) in college. It's like Intro to Physics, Chemistry, Geology and Astronomy al...
  • Paul E. Morph
    A really interesting book. Bryson succeeds in explaining some complex topics in such a way that they can be understood by the layman. I enjoyed this one a great deal. If I had one complaint it would be that some of the tangents were allowed to run on a bit too long, to the point where I almost forgot what the author was talking about in the first place.
  • Maciek
    This is an immensely readable book with a truly monumental amount of information. While reading it, one might wish to remember all its content, but it's written in a way allowing the reader to pick up the volume and start reading at any point, according to his interests, though Bryson relays all subjects in captivating and available way, with a big dose of humor.This is a weighty book - 600 pages - but Bryson's not joking. He really tries to cove...
  • Mohamed al-Jamri
    هذا الكتاب رائعٌ حقًا واستطيع بلا تردد وصفه بواجب القراءة لكل شخص يريد أن يخرج من الأمية العلمية.منذ البداية يسحرك الكتاب بمقدمته الشاعرية التي تجعلك لا تريد التوقف عن قراءته. ينتقد الكاتب في البداية صعوبة فهم الكتب العلمية وكأن هناك مؤامرة خفية ل...
  • Semjon
    Abbruch bei knapp 40 %: Bill Bryson hat es nicht einfach mit mir als Leser. Er trifft auf einen naturwissenschaftlichen Unbegabten, der selbst nicht so recht weiß, wie man ihm nach den traumatischen Erlebnissen in der Schulzeit in Physik und Chemie für die Materie begeistern kann. Ich bin in der glücklichen Lage, das Leben, das Universum und den ganzen Rest einfach so zu nehmen, wie sie sind, ohne groß die Gebrauchsanweisung dafür lesen zu m...