Astrophysics for people in a hurry was the first book I read that was written by Neil DeGrasse Tyson. Dr. Tyson has always been on the spotlight in the scientific community, and his interviews and opinions have always been a source of inspiration for me, and finally I got time to read a book by him. This was his latest book specifically on astrophysics, with the aim, “For all those who are too busy to read fat books. Yet nonetheless seek a conduit to the cosmos.” And it’s not a shocker how well it achieves that goal.
One of the shortest books I have read, specially keeping in mind it focuses on such a diverse topic, it took me around eight hours to finish the book. Even then it actually covered various topics of space science quite beautifully, in a concise and quick manner. Starting from big bang, talking about dark matter and dark energy, about intergalactic and interplanetary objects, ending with one of the best concluding chapters I have ever read. I knew he was great with words, but Dr. Tyson really did a great job in the last chapter. I was marking some quotes and phrases to quote them here, but the last chapter was full with some of so important phrases, I will be posting them separately. It was basically a reminder of our duties as humans, as an intelligent specie, to appreciate the grandness of the universe, and accept that it doesn’t revolve around us, and stop killing in the name of difference in ideologies, culture, religion, caste, creed, sex, identity or skin colour.
Another thing about this book, more importantly the author, that I really liked were little pieces of humour inserted everywhere, to ease the reading. In one place, he mentions that Neptune is the last planet in the Solar System and inserted a note for it at the end, “Not Pluto. Get over it.”, this reminded me of the episode in the sitcom ‘The Big Bang Theory’ where Sheldon hates him for demoting Pluto from its planetary status. That actually made the book really reader-friendly. This is really important especially while targeting an audience that most likely finds your book’s topic hard, or at times even boring (mostly due to difficulty in keeping up). I am surely reading more of him as soon as I can. Neil DeGrasse Tyson has always been a badass scientist.
If you need a quick read for the weekend, and want to learn something really new, which I surely did, and find space intriguing but hate that you know a lot less, then this is the book that you need. If you have read a book, of similar genre, or topic that you really loved, please feel free to suggest them in the comments below. Happy Reading!
-The Cosmogasmic Person