Journey by Starlight: A Time Traveler's Guide to Life, the Universe, and Everything

Overview

Albert Einstein said his first ideas about relativity came from looking in the mirror as a teenager and wondering what it would be like to travel on a beam of light. This is the story of that journey…

Journey by Starlight follows Albert Einstein 2.0, an artificial intelligence (AI) recreation of Albert Einstein, and his traveling companion through space and time as they travel on a beam of light from a star over 3,000 light years away to Earth. Along the way, Einstein explains ...

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Overview

Albert Einstein said his first ideas about relativity came from looking in the mirror as a teenager and wondering what it would be like to travel on a beam of light. This is the story of that journey…

Journey by Starlight follows Albert Einstein 2.0, an artificial intelligence (AI) recreation of Albert Einstein, and his traveling companion through space and time as they travel on a beam of light from a star over 3,000 light years away to Earth. Along the way, Einstein explains the science behind everything from the origins of the universe to the meaning of life, relativity, black holes, quantum mechanics (for beginners), climate change, evolution vs. intelligent design, and how the brain works, all delivered in fun, easy-to-understand, bite-sized chunks.

Based on the popular blog of the same name, Journey By Starlight has been given the graphic novel treatment, pairing the narrative with fantastic, whimsical artwork to assist in simplifying what can be difficult-to-understand ideas.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In an intricate and detailed comic, Albert Einstein is recruited to tell the story of the makings of the universe, in just a little over 200 pages. Einstein zooms through the cosmos, filling in his nameless travel companion on not only how the universe works, but also about the people behind the theories and ideas that helped move society past fear and superstition of the sciences. The comic is based on Flitcroft’s blog, “Journey by Starlight,” which breaks down major scientific concepts for the everyday reader and is filled with enthusiastic illustrations from Britt Spencer. Every panel is packed with information and minute detail, and filled with humor that keeps the pace feeling speedy, even when the concepts are complicated and drawn out. The use of Einstein feels forced at times, with Flitcroft packing his own earnestness into Einstein’s image, but Flitcroft’s mission to make science more accessible is sincere. Even if this story isn’t a light read, it has the potential to open up physics and the realm of Einstein to unsuspecting comics fans, which means Flitcroft’s journey is a success. (Mar.)
Library Journal
This engaging popular-science work for younger readers is based on a blog by Dublin eye surgeon and creator Flitcroft and narrated by a fictional Albert Einstein as he rides a ray of light toward Earth. Along the way, Einstein explains (to an unnamed companion full of questions) foundational science ideas, discoveries, and terms in the areas of physics, astronomy, biology, and genetics, from the big bang to evolution to his own theory of relativity. Flitcroft's personable Einstein, appealingly rendered by illustrator Spencer in a big-nosed caricature, provides many concise descriptions of scientific phenomena, including a particularly nice explication of the Schroedinger's cat paradox. He relates unusual or humorous anecdotes from the history of science in the manner of Larry Gonick's Cartoon Histories, and occasionally waxes philosophical. A few bits seem forced, some explanations are not entirely clear, and Spencer unfortunately keeps changing the number of color bands in his rainbows. VERDICT While not quite as charming or outstanding as the best books of this type (see Gonick or Jay Hosler's Evolution), this is still a worthwhile addition to popular-science collections.—S.R.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781935548232
  • Publisher: One Peace Books, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 1/15/2013
  • Pages: 208
  • Sales rank: 1,429,806
  • Product dimensions: 8.80 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Ian Flitcroft is a vision scientist and consultant eye surgeon in Dublin with a PhD in Neuroscience. He is also the founder of a successful international software company with offices in Dublin and New York, and the creator of Albert 2.0, an interactive AI (Artificial Intelligence) platform available for play on his Journey by Starlight blog, which you can visit at www.journeybystarlight.com. Ian lives in Dublin, Ireland.

Britt Spencer is an award-winning illustrator with a BFA and MFA from the Savannah College of Art and Design. Since his arrival into the commercial art world, Britt's work has been published internationally and been recognized by the distinguished New York Society of Illustrators and the Society of Illustrators West. He is also the illustrator for several children's books, including Penguin's Fleas!, Make Your Mark, Franklin Roosevelt, and Zarafa. Britt lives in Savannah, Georgia.

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