(-) indicates that a staff member of JSP has read the book and does not recommend it.
(0) indicates that a staff member of JSP has read the book and has a neutral opinion.
Advanced Placement Biology Examination: Preparation Guide by Phillip E. Pack
Almost Everyone's Guide to Science: The Universe, Life and Everything by John R. Gribbin
Alpha and Omega: The Search for the Beginning and End of the Universe by Charles Seife
Annals of the Former World by John A. McPhee
The Ape and the Sushi Master: Cultural Reflections of a Primatologist by Franz De Waal
Atom: An Odyssey by Lawrence M. Krauss
The Backyard Astronomer's Guide
Bad Astronomy: Misconceptions and Misuses Revealed, from Astrology to the Moon Landing "Hoax" by Philip C. Plait
Basic Physics: A Self-Teaching Guide by Karl F. Kuhn
(+) The Bible According to Einstein: A Scientific Complement to the Holy Bible for the Third Millennium
Mini-Review: This book contains everything you might want to know about science but in a biblical format. There are some very nicely written poetic passages. The one drawback is the dogmatic and overly authoritative picture that it portrays of science.
The Bit and the Pendulum: : From Quantum Computing to M Theory by Tom Siegfried
The Blind Watchmaker: Why the Evidence of Evolution Reveals a Universe Without Design by Richard Dawkins
The Botany of Desire: A Plant's-Eye View of the World by Michael Pollan
(+) A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking
Read a review by the Jupiter Scientific staff.
The Cartoon Guide to Genetics by Larry Gonick
(0) Chaos: Making a New Science by James Gleick
Mini-Review: The book over-emphasizes the movement of the scientific community in establishing chaos as a field of study. It is certainly important but not as revolutionary as James Gleick makes out. He also argues correctly that in the early stages of development, chaos did not arise as part of mainstream science and mathematics. However, many new theoretical fields develop this way. The book provides mini-biographies of some of the main chaos scientists and describes all the important concepts: turbulence, the butterfly effect, unpredictability, randomness, non-linearity, dynamical systems, complex systems, bifurcations, the period-doubling road to chaos, strange attractors, fractals, self-similarity, scaling, universality in chaos, Poincaré map, instability, chaotic behavior and Lyapunov exponents.
Chemistry: Concepts and Problems: A Self-Teaching Guide by Clifford C. Houk
Cliffs AP Biology by Phillip E. Pack
Complexity: The Emerging Science at the Edge of Order and Chaos by M. Mitchell Waldrop
(-) Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge by Edward O. Wilson
Mini-Review: It is hard to believe that this book sold well. It is extremely boring, not focused and a waste of time except for perhaps the last chapter.
Cracking the Genome: Inside the Race to Unlock Human DNA by Kevin Davie
(+) The Dancing Wu Li Masters: An Overview of the New Physics by Gary Zukav
Mini-Review: This books is a very nice introduction to quantum mechanics, atomic physics, special relativity and particle physics aimed at the non-scientist who is interested in modern physics. The interpretation of quantum mechanics is for the most part incorrect although there are physicists who advocate the picture provided in the book. The reader will do well to skip this part of quantum mechanics since it is confusing.
Darwin's Ghost: The Origin of Species Updated by Steve Jones
Dawn of Man: The Story of Human Evolution by Robin McKie
The Demon-Haunted World: Science As a Candle in the Dark by Carl Sagan
The Design of Everyday Things by Donald A. Norman
A Devil's Chaplain : Reflections on Hope, Lies, Science, and Love by Richard Dawkins
DNA: The Secret of Life by James D. Watson
(+) The Elegant Universe: Superstrings, Hidden Dimensions, and the Quest for the Ultimate Theory by Brian Greene
Mini-Review: The book is extremely well written and does not avoid tackling the difficult-to-explain issues of modern physics and string theory. An intelligent reader will learn a lot about one of the great theoretical movements of science. The only drawback is that no one knows whether string theory is correct. For this reason, string theory probably should not be presented to the public at this time.
The End of Time: The Next Revolution in Physics by Julian B. Barbour
Entanglement: The Greatest Mystery in Physics by Amir D. Aczel
Evolution: The Triumph of an Idea by Carl Zimmer
The Extravagant Universe: Exploding Stars, Dark Energy, and the Accelerating Cosmos by Robert P. Kirshner
E = mc2: A Biography of the World's Most Famous Equation by David Bodanis
Faster Than the Speed of Light: The Story of a Scientific Speculation by Joao Magueijo
The Five Ages of the Universe: Inside the Physics of Eternity by Fred Adams and Greg Laughlin
Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions by Edwin A. Abbott
The Future of Spacetime by S. W. Hawking (Editor)
Genes, Peoples and Languages by Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza
(+) Genome: The Autobiography of a Species in 23 Chapters by Matt Ridley
Mini-Review: In a very clever way, the book uses the 23 chromosomes to explain how genes produce personality, diseases, intelligence, traits, defects, longevity and many other aspects of human life. It is an excellent, simple introduction into genetic biology.
God's Equation: Einstein, Relativity, and the Expanding Universe by Amir D. Aczel
The Hole in the Universe: How Scientists Peered over the Edge of Emptiness and Found Everything by K. C. Cole
At Home in the Universe: The Search for Laws of Self-Organization and Complexity by Stuart Kauffman
(0) How the Mind Works by Steven Pinker
Mini-Review: The book does not explain how the mind works and in this sense is a failure. The author admits this in the Introduction;". . . we don't understand how the mind works . . . and certainty not well enough to design utopia or to cure unhappiness." The 600-page book discusses an enormous range of topics, many of which have little to do with the mind. The second chapter argues that the brain is a parallel analog machine something that many readers would not find that enlightening. The last few chapters are best described as the evolutionary origin of sociology, psychology, personality and emotions. In the case of humans, too much emphasis is placed on the Darwin-like thinking and not enough on the cultural passing of traditions. Despite its overstated title and chapter headings, the book is extremely well written and clever in its use of the English language.
How to Build a Time Machine by P. C. W. Davies
The Hunt for Zero Point: Inside the Classified World of Antigravity Technology by Nick Cook
(+) Hyperspace: A Scientific Odyssey Through Parallel Universes, Time Warps and the Tenth Dimension by Michio Kaku
Mini-Review: This book is the best one on the speculative idea that the number of spatial dimensions of the universe might be more than three. It begins with a nice metaphor about a fish in a shallow pond that cannot imagine that there is a world beyond its murky waters.
Icons of Evolution: Science or Myth? by Jonathan Wells
An Intimate Look at the Night Sky by Chet Raymo
The Journey of Man: A Genetic Odyssey by Spencer Wells
Just Six Numbers: The Deep Forces that Shape the Universe by Martin J. Rees
The Little Ice Age: How Climate Made History 1300-1850 by Brian M. Fagan
Lucifer's Legacy: The Meaning of Asymmetry by F. E. Close
The Lying Stones of Marrakech: Penultimate Reflections in Natural History by Stephen Jay Gould
The Making of the Atomic Bomb by Richard Rhodes
Mapping the Mind by Rita Carter
Marshall Brain's How Stuff Works by Marshall Brain
A Matter of Degrees: What Temperature Reveals by Gino Segre
Molecular Biology of the Cell by Bruce Alberts, Alexander Johnson, Julian Lewis, Martin Raff, Keith Roberts, Peter Walter
Nature Via Nurture : Genes, Experience, and What Makes Us Human by Matt Ridley
Nature's Building Blocks: An A-Z Guide to the Elements by John Emsley
A New Kind of Science by Stephen Wolfram
Nightwatch: A Practical Guide to Viewing the Universe by Terence Dickinson
Our Cosmic Habitat by Martin J. Rees
Pleasure of Finding Things Out by Richard Feynman
(+) Relativity: The Special and the General Theory by Albert Einstein
Mini-Review: This book is a classic. One learns about special and general relativity from the genius who created the theories.
Scientific American How Things Work Today
In Search of Deep Time: Beyond the Fossil Record to a New History of Life by Henry Gee
The Secret Life of Dust: From the Cosmos to the Kitchen Counter, the Big Consequences of Little Things by Hannah Holmes
Seeing in the Dark: How Backyard Stargazers Are Probing Deep Space by Timothy Ferris
The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins
The Seven Daughters of Eve: The Science That Reveals Our Genetic Ancestry by Bryan Sykes
A Shortcut Through Time: The Path to a Quantum Computer by George Johnson
A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson
On the Shoulders of Giants by Stephen Hawking (Editor)
Strange Beauty: Murray Gell-Mann and the Revolution in Twentieth-Century Physics by George Johnson
The Structure of Evolutionary Theory by Stephen Jay Gould
Sync: The Emerging Science of Spontaneous Order by Steven Strogatz
(-) The Tao of Physics: An Exploration of the Parallels Between Modern Physics and Eastern Mysticism by Fritjof Capra
Mini-Review: The book tries to draw parallels between physics and eastern religions that are at best accidental and are in most cases a stretch of the imagination.
The Theory of Everything: The Origin and Fate of the Universe by Stephen Hawking
The Third Chimpanzee by Jared Diamond
Three Roads to Quantum Gravity by Lee Smolin
Time Travel in Einstein's Universe by J. Richard Gott
Trilobite: Eyewitness to Evolution by Richard Fortey
The Triple Helix: Gene, Organism, and Environment by Richard C. Lewontin
Turn Left at Orion: A Hundred Night Sky Objects to See in a Small Telescope by Dan M. Davis
Tyrannosaurus Sue: The Extraordinary Saga of the Largest, Most Fought over T-Rex Ever Found by Steve Fiffer
The Universe in a Nutshell by Stephen Hawking
(0) Visions: How Science Will Revolutionize the 21st Century by Michio Kaku
Mini-Review: Predictions are made about the technological advances of the 20th century. Many parts of the book are obvious and the timing of certain events is guesswork. Much of the book is not about science but about computers and medicine.
(+) Voodoo Science: The Road from Foolishness to Fraud by Robert L. Park
Read a review by the Jupiter Scientific staff.
Walking with Dinosaurs: A Natural History by Tim Haines
What Evolution Is by Ernst Mayr
365 Starry Nights: An Introduction to Astronomy for Every Night of the Year by Chet Raymo