Customer Reviews for

A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes

Average Rating 4.5
( 147 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(96)

4 Star

(32)

3 Star

(10)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(6)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

Most Helpful Favorable Review

15 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

Such a great mind

When I started reading this book, I thought there is no way in the world I will be able to understand one of the greatest minds in physics today. How wrong I was! Dr. Hawking makes complicated theory understandable for the rest of us. This is a fascinating book that I w...
When I started reading this book, I thought there is no way in the world I will be able to understand one of the greatest minds in physics today. How wrong I was! Dr. Hawking makes complicated theory understandable for the rest of us. This is a fascinating book that I would recommend to everyone.

posted by ReadingRedHead on August 5, 2010

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review

Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 30 people found this review helpful.

g b bbnvnbC

What the heck

posted by 3793948 on January 14, 2012

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 32 review with 4 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 2
  • Posted September 14, 2011

    Great, Quick, Comprehensive Read

    Throughout his book, Stephen Hawking presents his outstanding observations and beliefs of the physics of our universe. Hawking presents information on the history of the universe, motion of the universe and most exhilarating of all, black holes. He includes his perception and opinions of the universe and its past as well as the physics acting upon it as time passes He presents the writing in reasonable short chapters that help you understand him and all of his reasoning as well as the tons of background information that he has researched and drawn his observations from. I would recommend this as a read for anyone that has even a slight interest in astronomy and the cosmos. Stephen Hawking teaches you about simple and general astronomy and from that draws major theories that are constantly changing as we learn more about our universe through technological innovations. There are many pages that will have to be read multiple times before you can really understand what he is even talking about. This isn't really a book that you can skim through or you are bound to miss something vital to the theory of relativity or some function of quantum physics. Since it is so thorough, unlike some books, you WILL put it down. Chances are, you'll throw it down in frustration with Hawking, but you will be rewarded in the end when you realize how blatantly he put some of the most complex thoughts and information accessible to humans. I enjoyed Hawkings sense of humor and voice in his writing. Before I read this book, physics seemed extremely dry and boring but he adds humor and feeling and made me captivated by concepts. I felt like I was sitting in a classroom while I read this, hearing the teachers voice rambling on and on and on about something I didn't really care about until he cracked a joke that I just caught through the blur of boredom. I let out a little chuckle and grin then realize that the subject is exhilarating and fun. I had no dislike from this book, just shock and awe of a new subject that I knew very little about. Irate this book overall, four stars out five because I do not think this book is for everyone, but I loved it and believe that many people could capture some of the ideas in the writing and be surprised with an epiphany of your surroundings and how miniscule we are in the universe and how much else is out there in time and space.

    12 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 17, 2009

    A Brief History of time is a good read

    I am in 8th grade and got this book recommended to me by my teachers. It is an informative book but you need to have a fairly high reading level to understand some parts of it.This book also answers a lot of the questions I had. All in all, it is a good book.

    9 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 9, 2012

    Stephen Hawking┬┐s A Brief History of Time is a mind-boggling se

    Stephen Hawking’s A Brief History of Time is a mind-boggling series of facts and theories. From his explanation of the big bang, black holes, and relativity, everything in the book is explained thoroughly so that more simplistic minds than that of Stephen Hawking’s can understand. I really liked how he explained different factors of why our universe exists the way it does and how it would be if some factors were changed. His explanation of relativity was also quite impressive to me because of the real life examples Hawking provided to the reader. Don’t get me wrong, this book is very complex and difficult to understand. I found myself having to re-read certain sections of the book just to make sure I was understanding what I was reading. People who are interested in science, math, or physics should definitely keep an open mind about reading this book. People with minimal focus towards scientific theory or math should pass this one up. Hawking takes the time to explain every little thing with great detail. Even though this book is around 180 pages, it is not a quick read. People without much free time should not read this book. Since I am only 15, it is impossible for me to completely understand quantum mechanics or complex theories. There is a very helpful glossary in the back of the book though. I highly recommend other scientific books about space and time if one enjoyed reading this one. Stephen Hawking’s mind is to brilliant, that he can simplify complex theories and ideas so that people like me can completely understand what he is talking about. His mind soars beyond what is comprehensive about the universe that we live in. I give this book a ¿.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 23, 2010

    A Brief History of Time

    I am a sophomore in high school and read this book for a physics project. Overall, I was very pleased with the book because it explains and describes thoroughly. It is a harder read though, so I would not recommend this to a person with weak reading skills. If you are a strong reader and willing to work to understand some of the content, this book is right up your alley. It is a very interesting and intriguing read and explained the future of the universe nicely. I would seriously recommend it to college students and especially people who are interested in physics and astronomy because I doubt anyone younger or not extremely interested in physics or astronomy will be able to fully grasp all of the concepts and content and enjoy it as it should be. Hawking really understands and enjoys the topics of his writing, and that is apparent throughout the entire book. All in all, this was a very thought provoking book, and I really enjoyed learning more about the universe than I ever thought I would. I just want to say thank you to Stephen Hawking for writing such an awesome new classic to add to my collection.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 5, 2008

    Brief History of Time

    All in all, this was definitely one of the better books that I have ever read. There was a lot of interesting information that really made you think, although lots of the material was quite complicated. I enjoyed parts of the book that explained the future of the universe and was glad to know that my own theories match the ones in the book. This is definitely a must read for science lover although I would recommend it for university students if you are expecting to understand all of the content.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 22, 2000

    Quantum Physics for Regular People

    This book was exciting to read because it presented information about the theory of relativity, time travel, black holes,quantum physics, particles and other studies, in an easy and fun to read manner. Stephen W. Hawking gave me the opportunity to study some very complicated and interesting scientific issues in a detailed and precise manner, without boring me with massive formulas, talking down to me, and without jamming me with academic regalia. The author was able to translate complicated scientific theories in a way that makes it easy for 'non-science majors' to understand. His examples are fun and helpful. The results are a much clearer understanding of the world around me, and the space/time continuum. My favorite and the most amazing example was the 'Spin' theory. How can a particle be rotated 720% before it resumes it's original look? Isn't 360% a full rotation? Read it and you will find out! The author explains this phenomenon very clearly in simple terms, with interesting stories and examples. In conclusion I recommend this book to anyone who has ever wondered about light speed, space/time curvature, the theories regarding the expansion of or the implosion of the universe, black holes, gravity, or the BIG BANG theory. This book has it all. Try it!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2014

    Test

    Nice book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2012

    Too expensive

    He book i had read several years ago and it is a good way to know something about time and universe. However it is not that dear than the digital one.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 17, 2012

    ? Probably

    My dad read this book and says it is good.i am gonna go with his opinion.Great Book?

    0 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 11, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    Well-written and informative.

    A Brief History of Time covers everything from quantum mechanics to black holes to time travel. (Everyone on Earth is a time-traveler, just all moving at the same rate forward!) Hawking explains the evolution of human thought about astronomy, from the Greeks, all the way to the present. The beginning of the book was dry and hard to read, and it got tangled and confusing towards the end, but in general it was easy to understand, and interesting. The book covers ideas such as the model of our universe, including a multi-verse theory, the nature of our universe, why things are the way they are, quantum mechanics and string theory. For a "brief" history of time, this book gets really in-depth with important concepts. It made difficult ideas easy to understand, but also dragged it out a bit. There were a couple things that I didn't get, but either they didn't come up again, or they played a small part. This book is for a wide range of people and it helps to know a bit of physics before you start reading it. Conversely, a lot of the book gets boring if you know the content already. Stephen Hawking manages to be informative, while keeping it interesting and adding a bit of voice. However, he is a bit contradictory when it comes to more recent theories; he explains how he helped prove a theory, but now believes that it is wrong. This contradiction makes it a bit more difficult to understand, and it just doesn't fit with the feel of the rest of the book. One thing that really rang true for me was the idea of the anthropic principle. Essentially, it is just that the laws of physics are the way they are because we wouldn't exist to discover them if they were different. Stephen Hawking conveyed it negatively, as if it was just giving up, but I disagree. Physics isn't just the study of why things are the way they are. A Brief History of Time is a fantastic book and a must-read for anyone who is interested in physics or astronomy.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 11, 2011

    A Great Informative Read

    Stephen Hawking's A Brief History of Time does a superb job of outlining the basic principles and theories behind general relativity and quantum physics and mechanics. The book gives a basic understanding, and should leave you with a good grasp on the theories of relativity, provided you have the patience to read, comprehend, and possibly re-read the explanations. For even though Stephen Hawking simplifies it, not matter how hard you try physics is inherently confusing. A Brief History of Time also touches base on Time, as the fourth dimension, quantum mechanics, the origin and fate of the universe, elementary particles, black holes, wormholes and time travel, and finally the unification of physics. And if you take the time to understand it all you should feel that you understand most of it. If you appreciate the sciences and want to learn about the underlying laws that govern us all I would highly recommend this book. I know that I came out of reading this feeling that physics wasn't a giant beast of a science that would be too complicated for me to ever truly understand. If you're looking for an easy read though, I would not recommend this book, this isn't a book you can take to a beach and relax with. A Brief History of Time definitely makes you think and because of this it's not an easy read. I enjoyed how easy he made physics feel, but I did not enjoy how long and hard of a read book felt like. Note that I came into this with very little knowledge of physics, and I'm sure someone with an underlying understanding of physics would have this book come more easily to him or her. If you end up enjoying this book I would definitely look into Stephen Hawking's The Universe in a Nutshell. This book will give you an even further knowledge into the way the universe works. Overall I enjoyed this book, and I think that everyone should read it, because everyone should know about the universe that they live in.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 17, 2009

    Page 17

    On page 17 it states "the gravitational attraction of a star is exactly one quarter that of a similar star at half the distance.", should it be twice the gravitational attraction?<BR/><BR/>Allen Mc Nece

    0 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 30, 2007

    Quite good however not an easy read for high school

    I think it is good however it is a bit difficult for some high school students

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 24, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 29, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 12, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 5, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 4, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 31, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 32 review with 4 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 2