Books: Beyond The Theoretical

Physicist Stephen Hawking's latest is provocative, informative and more accessible than his last

Nobody has ever figured out precisely why Stephen Hawking's first popular book, A Brief History of Time, has been such a gigantic success, selling an astonishing 10 million copies since it was published in 1988. One possibility is that readers thought they were hearing from the greatest physicist since Einstein, and maybe the greatest of all time (Hawking himself declared that comparison "rubbish" in a TIME interview several years ago, and most of his colleagues agree with him). Another, more plausible reason is the public's fascination with a man who is utterly immobilized by the degenerative disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, yet...

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