Death by Black Hole: And Other Cosmic Quandaries

Death by Black Hole: And Other Cosmic Quandaries

by Neil deGrasse Tyson

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780393350388
Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 09/02/2014
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 31,101
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Neil deGrasse Tyson is an astrophysicist with the American Museum of Natural History, director of its world-famous Hayden Planetarium, host of the hit radio and TV show StarTalk, and the New York Times best-selling author of Astrophysics for People in a Hurry. He lives in New York City.

Table of Contents


Preface     11
Acknowledgments     13
Prologue: The Beginning of Science     15
The Nature of Knowledge: The challenges of knowing what is knowable in the universe
Coming to Our Senses     25
On Earth as in the Heavens     31
Seeing Isn't Believing     38
The Information Trap     48
Stick-in-the-Mud Science     60
The Knowledge of Nature: The challenges of discovering the contents of the cosmos
Journey from the Center of the Sun     69
Planet Parade     75
Vagabonds of the Solar System     85
The Five Points of Lagrange     95
Antimatter Matters     102
Ways and Means of Nature: How Nature presents herself to the inquiring mind
The Importance of Being Constant     111
Speed Limits     119
Going Ballistic     127
On Being Dense     135
Over the Rainbow     144
Cosmic Windows     152
Colors of the Cosmos     161
Cosmic Plasma     168
Fire and Ice     175
The Meaning of Life: The challenges and triumphs of knowing how we got here
Dust to Dust     185
Forged in the Stars     192
Send in the Clouds     199
Goldilocks and the Three Planets     207
Water, Water     213
Living Space     221
Life in the Universe     229
Our Radio Bubble     238
When the Universe Turns Bad: All the ways the cosmos wants to kill us
Chaos in the Solar System     249
Coming Attractions     254
Ends of the World     263
Galactic Engines     268
Knock 'Em Dead     275
Death by Black Hole     283
Science and Culture: The ruffled interface between cosmic discovery and the public's reaction to it
Things People Say     291
Fear of Numbers     298
On Being Baffled     303
Footprints in the Sands of Science     309
Let There Be Dark     320
Hollywood Nights     327
Science and God: When ways of knowing collide
In the Beginning     337
Holy Wars     346
The Perimeter of Ignorance     353
References     363
Name Index     369
Subject Index     373

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Death by Black Hole 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 100 reviews.
Calatelpe More than 1 year ago
This book is very easy to read, even if you are not otherwise very interested in science. One of its stronger points is its accessibility to laypeople. If you've ever seen him speak on tv, then you know how capable he is of making everything he talks about incredibly interesting (even if it might otherwise come off as mundane by someone with even a little less enthusiasm). His writing style is no different, and his own love of science (and astrophysics in particular) is infectious. I learned a lot of really interesting things from this book, things of which I had been disappointingly ignorant of beforehand. Lagrange points, for instance, or how just how much you can determine about the universe by literally measure it with a stick in the mud. Were you interested in the universe, in astronomy when you were a little kid...did you grow out of it? This book will take you back to that early appreciation, and it'll never let go.
Susan Nord More than 1 year ago
Neil deGrasse Tyson's enthusiasm for the universe is really shown in this book. Filled with humor, Death by Black Hole takes complex subjects and exposes them to the reader in a way that is very easy to understand. I benifitted from reading this book twice to better understand some of the concepts. Enthralling!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had to read about half of this book for school, and found myself reading way ahead and finishing the entire thing. Even if you knew nothing about science and the cosmos, you could understand this. Tysonexplains everything clearly amd in depth. Great buy!
Old_Sage More than 1 year ago
In writing "Death by Black Hole," Neil Degrasse Tyson has proven once again that he is an exceptional Astrophysicist. His mental dexterity related to matters of science and the universe are beyond reproach. Although I would recommend his writings and lectures for the general reader to the scholar, I would caution the mentally obtuse to refresh their understanding of general science so that they can fully appreciate the insightfulness of "Death by Black Hole." I would also recommend reviewing Dr. Tyson's presentation during his contribution to the Salk Institute for Biological Studies' scientific conversation titled "Beyond Belief: Science, Reason, Religion & Survival." For those also interested in esoteric teachings, "Death by Black Hole" informs us that stars come in 3 basic colors: red, white, and blue. Interestingly, these were also the 3 colors chosen for the flag of the United States. Part of the brillance of Dr. Tyson and his book is how he takes common knowledge and sprinkles it with scientific study to make a cerebral subject like astrophyics interesting.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Is anyone else having trouble with the order of posts? I am not getting the most recent first for some reason... <p> Sapphirestar pulls herself upright once Spiritnight is removed from her, and she looks at Lavamist with unfamiliarity. There was a time she would have assumed Lavamist would always trust her, that if she had a reason to mistrust another she would trust her. "You're right Lavamist, I don't know what I'm thinking. I'm normally unfair and accusing, aren't I? You have reason not to believe me," Sapphirestar says to the younger shecat in sarcasm. "But why don't you ask Spiritnight? Since he is so trustworthy," the tabby directs her burning blue gaze at the tom, "ask him what I might have learned during my stay with the Ice Claws." <br> Spiritnight doesn't fight Lavamist when she pulls him back but growls a warning to Sapphirestar. He remains silent as she speaks and realizes too late that Sapphirestar knows his entire story. His heart pounds in his ears but still the tom maintains his silence. <br> Sapphirestar's gaze sharpens further and she slowly says, "Tell Lavamist the truth, show me there is even the slightest bit of honesty within you and speak up, or I will."
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book! It was very well-written and easy to understand. Dr. Tyson passes on a world (galaxy?) (universe?) of information in a highly entertaining manner. I recommend this book for anyone who is interested in general science, astronomy, or cosmology. I have read a number of books on this subject, but still learned a lot from this one. Put it at the top of your must-read list!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The best book ever
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A great book for all that want to know about the cosmos without falling asleep.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tyson takes the dryness out of the topic of the universe and makes the reader want to keep turning the page. I couldn't put this book down and is a great intro to a complex suject.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As the title says this book was very informative. I liked the format it was presented in, which I can't really can't put in a category. Tyson did a good job explaining some basic, and some more advanced, topics.
whitetara on LibraryThing 29 days ago
I had the opportunity to take an intro to astrophysics course that was taught by Neil deGrasse Tyson and Charles Liu at the Museum of Natural History in NYC. Neil is a great teacher and this book reads exactly as he speaks - quick-witted and factually with plenty of easy to relate to references that help to bring the science to laymen. The book will be a quick read and a review for anyone that is well versed in the basic topics of astrophysics but for those that have an interest and have never read anything about it before, this would be great to start with. For those that have already delved into this arena, I feel they'll find it too basic. But well written.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A cinder colored female with amber orbs padded in. Deep inside her yellow cresents fire flickered slowly, desperate to be let out. With one flick of her black ears she turned to get a good look around. "Hello." She purred slowly, sitting down after she was content.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Stumbled in with 2 small kits trailing behind her. "Can I join?"
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A great review or first time exposure to cosmology by a master.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
ricter87 More than 1 year ago
It's well presented by Neil deGrasse Tyson, but that's not saying it's easy to understand. Stick with it though, it's worth it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Interesting book, is like reading his TV show of the cosmos. Love it!
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I absolutely love this book and have recommended it to many of my friends. I bought it when it had come out i print, and can't think of any reason not to tell someone not to buy it for both a fun and informative read.