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In the first story, "Conceits (Howard)," Ren studies chemistry and dates the monumentally self-absorbed Howard Fein, a medical student whose selfishness results in lifelong repercussions for Ren. Later, in "Gases (Raoul)," Ren has a toxic affair with fellow atmospheric chemist Raoul Gautier, who alternately accepts and rejects her advances. In "The Estimator (Georges)," readers meet Georges Standon, a space scientist haunted by the long-ago disappearance of his wife, Odile.
Nearly forty of the world's most esteemed scientists discuss the big questions that drive their illustrious careers. Co-editor Eduardo Punset—one of Spain's most loved personages for his popularization of the sciences—interviews an impressive collection of characters drawing out the seldom seen personalities of the world's most important men and woman of science. In Mind, Life and Universe they describe in their own words the most important and fascinating aspects of their research. Frank and often irreverent, these interviews will keep even the most casual reader of science books rapt for hours. Can brain science explain feelings of happiness and despair? Is it true that chimpanzees are just like us when it comes to sexual innuendo? Is there any hard evidence that life exists anywhere other than on the Earth? Through Punset's skillful questioning, readers will meet one scientist who is passionate about the genetic control of everything and another who spends her every waking hour making sure African ecosystems stay intact. The men and women assembled here by Lynn Margulis and Eduardo Punset will provide a source of endless interest. In captivating conversations with such science luminaries as Jane Goodall, James E. Lovelock, Oliver Sachs, and E. O. Wilson, Punset reveals a hidden world of intellectual interests, verve, and humor. Science enthusiasts and general readers alike will devour Mind, Life and Universe, breathless and enchanted by its truths.
A collection of essays covering a variety of scientific topics including the nature of technology to the human body, evolution, and ecology.
From New York Times bestselling author Sam Kean comes incredible stories of science, history, language, and music, as told by our own DNA. In The Disappearing Spoon, bestselling author Sam Kean unlocked the mysteries of the periodic table. In THE VIOLINIST'S THUMB, he explores the wonders of the magical building block of life: DNA. There are genes to explain crazy cat ladies, why other people have no fingerprints, and why some people survive nuclear bombs. Genes illuminate everything from JFK's bronze skin (it wasn't a tan) to Einstein's genius. They prove that Neanderthals and humans bred thousands of years more recently than any of us would feel comfortable thinking. They can even allow some people, because of the exceptional flexibility of their thumbs and fingers, to become truly singular violinists. Kean's vibrant storytelling once again makes science entertaining, explaining human history and whimsy while showing how DNA will influence our species' future.
Note: This eBook file contains many richly detailed full-color images and makes use of unconventional page layouts. Because of this, readers will be required to zoom in on each page to read the text and see the finer detail of the artwork. [It has not been optimized for devices that display only in black and white.] From the National Book Award finalist Lauren Redniss, author of Radioactive, comes a dazzling fusion of storytelling, visual art, and reportage that grapples with weather in all its dimensions: its danger and its beauty, why it happens and what it means. WINNER OF THE PEN/E. O. WILSON LITERARY SCIENCE WRITING AWARD • NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE, KIRKUS REVIEWS, AND SHELF AWARENESS Weather is the very air we breathe—it shapes our daily lives and alters the course of history. In Thunder & Lightning, Lauren Redniss tells the story of weather and humankind through the ages. This wide-ranging work roams from the driest desert on earth to a frigid island in the Arctic, from the Biblical flood to the defeat of the Spanish Armada. Redniss visits the headquarters of the National Weather Service, recounts top-secret rainmaking operations during the Vietnam War, and examines the economic impact of disasters like Hurricane Katrina. Drawing on extensive research and countless interviews, she examines our own day and age, from our most personal decisions—Do I need an umbrella today?—to the awesome challenges we face with global climate change. Redniss produced each element of Thunder & Lightning: the text, the artwork, the covers, and every page in between. She created many of the images using the antiquated printmaking technique copper plate photogravure etching. She even designed the book’s typeface. The result is a book unlike any other: a spellbinding combination of storytelling, art, and science. Praise for Thunder & Lightning “[An] aesthetically charged and deeply researched account . . . a wild rainstorm of a book, pelting the reader with ideas and inspiration.”—Nature “A gorgeous and illuminating illustrated study of weather in all its tempestuous variety . . . Redniss’s combo of fact, folklore, and vibrant etched copperplate prints enthralls.”—O: The Oprah Magazine “Eerily beautiful . . . Contains plenty of scientific explanation (including more than a few nods toward global warming), but also far-flung personal stories that illuminate the beauty, wonder and chaos inherent in the elements.”—The New York Times “Magical . . . Redniss has . . . shown us how human beings live with nature—fighting, coexisting, taming, predicting via leech barometer and radar and intuition.”—The New York Times Book Review “[A] twenty-first-century genius . . . The reader willing to put herself fully in Redniss’s hands will be rewarded with a delicious feeling of being enveloped by a phenomenon that eclipses the chiming trivialities of daily life.”—Elle “Redniss is one of the most creative science writers of our time—her combination of beautiful artwork, reporting, and poetic prose brings science to life in ways that words alone simply cannot.”—Rebecca Skloot “Redniss combines her own dual punch of expressive art and impressive erudition to give an entirely new take on all that happens above our heads.”—Adam Gopnik “A strange and wonderful thing, the work of a first-class mind that refuses to submit to any categories or precedent.”—Dave Eggers
Discusses the widespread belief that the sinking of the Titanic was described before it happened, and presents the complete texts of Morgan Robinson's short novel, "Futility," about the sinking of a ship called the Titan, and similar works

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