A Palette of Particles and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Qty:1
  • List Price: $18.95
  • Save: $3.77 (20%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 12 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
A Palette of Particles has been added to your Cart
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: The item shows wear from consistent use, but it remains in good condition and works perfectly. It may be marked, have identifying markings on it, or show other signs of previous use.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

A Palette of Particles Hardcover – March 11, 2013


See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$15.18
$9.00 $1.18

Einstein's Dice and Schrödinger's Cat: How Two Great Minds Battled Quantum Randomness to Create a Unified Theory of Physics
Einstein's Dice and Schrödinger's Cat: How Two Great Minds Battled Quantum Randomness to Create a Unified Theory of Physics
Physicist Paul Halpern tells the little-known story of how Einstein and Schrödinger searched, first as collaborators and then as competitors, for a theory that transcended quantum weirdness. Learn more | See similar books
$15.18 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Only 12 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

A Palette of Particles + The Milky Way: An Insider's Guide
Price for both: $33.71

Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Whenever physicist Ernst Mach’s early-twentieth-century colleagues began theorizing about atoms, the skeptical Austrian asked, “Have you seen one?” A century later, through visionary powers conferred by recent science, Bernstein sees not just atoms but their constituent parts! And here he shares his intellectual eyesight with his readers. Beginning with five basic particles (protons, neutrons, electrons, neutrinos, and photons) representing what he calls “the primary colors” of the subatomic realm, Bernstein moves on to the dozens of lesser-known particles (including muons, mesons, and quarks) in the wonderland of “secondary colors” manifest in cosmic rays and high-energy atom-smashers. Finally, readers enter a region in which theorists posit particles, such as the Higgs boson and the tachyon, in a world of “pastels,” where the hues are so muted that they challenge the limits of human observation. As a cutting-edge physicist, Bernstein understands the mathematical complexities of his subject. Mercifully, however, he pares away most of those complexities, thereby allowing general readers to share in the excitement of epoch-making science without shouldering the burden of rigorous analysis. Not merely lucid, Bernstein’s exposition is refreshingly human, sprinkled with anecdotes revealing the piquant personalities of pioneering scientists including Einstein, Pauli, and Gell-Mann. A must-read for armchair physicists. --Bryce Christensen

Review

This is a superb little book. No one, with the possible exception of Freeman Dyson, writes so gracefully about physics and its recent history, or so effectively inserts himself into the story without self-advertisement. (Kenneth W. Ford, author of 101 Quantum Questions)

Few will resist [Bernstein's] accounts of the history, flamboyant geniuses (many of whom he knew personally), and basics of protons, neutrons and electrons that make up the familiar world. (Kirkus Reviews 2013-01-01)

Casting subatomic particles across a metaphorical painter's palette, Bernstein blends science, history, and anecdote (including his own work on staff at Harvard University and Princeton's Institute for Advanced Study) to reveal the lively, often bewildering world of particle physics...Bernstein is an unabashed romantic, fondly recalling the tabletop experiments of the mid-20th century (he's worked in the field for more than 50 years). Later discoveries, especially the Higgs--coaxed to visibility with powerful accelerators and computer analysis--remain, in the author's estimation, coldly 'abstract.' For Bernstein and for readers, the true wonder lies in how each discovery reveals yet another mystery. (Publishers Weekly 2012-12-17)

[Bernstein] pares away most of [the mathematical] complexities, thereby allowing general readers to share in the excitement of epoch-making science without shouldering the burden of rigorous analysis. Not merely lucid, Bernstein's exposition is refreshingly human, sprinkled with anecdotes revealing the piquant personalities of pioneering scientists including Einstein, Pauli, and Gell-Mann. A must-read for armchair physicists. (Bryce Christensen Booklist (starred review) 2013-02-15)

Physicist Jeremy Bernstein pays homage to the subatomic, tinting particles according to era of discovery. So electrons, neutrons and neutrinos are assigned primary colors; the muons through to quarks, secondary colors; and the Higgs boson, neutrino cosmology and squarks, tachyons and the graviton, pastels. The abstractions come alive as Bernstein meshes history and science with anecdotes on everyone from Murray Gell-Mann to Richard Feynman. A colorful chronicle backed by 50 years in the field. (Nature 2013-03-01)

The real appeal of A Palette of Particles...[is] Bernstein's infectious love not only for the mysteries of physics but also for the minds behind the magic. The stories and photos of physicists in action--especially that of Wolfgang Pauli and Niels Bohr, two venerable fathers of physics, bent over to watch the spinning of a child's top--bring physics to life in a way that equations simply can't. (Mary Mann Bookslut 2013-03-01)

[Bernstein] brings to this popular history of particle physics the advantage of having been around when some of that history was being made. Bernstein, now in his 80s, knew Wolfgang Pauli, who hypothesized the existence of the neutrino in 1930, a quarter-century before it could be confirmed...Bernstein covers the material in a sprightly manner, with only the occasional equation that will reveal the beauty of it all to the reader who can grasp it...It turns out that Bernstein's sober and lucid introduction to particle physics has an almost mystical quality, even if the author shows no interest in that kind of cosmic thinking. (Scott McLemee Inside Higher Ed 2013-02-27)

Overall, it is a pleasant, short read, and a reminder of the past century-and-a-half crusade at the forefront of modem physics.
(A. M. Saperstein Choice 2013-08-01)
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Belknap Press (March 11, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0674072510
  • ISBN-13: 978-0674072510
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 6.3 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #569,411 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Andrew Charig on July 10, 2013
Format: Hardcover
As a radioisotope synthetic chemist myself, I found Bernstein's book confusing and bewildering: some subjects are explained very thoroughly, starting from first concepts and elaborating them to get to the gritty detail, but others suddenly jump into the middle of extremely sophisticated ideas with no background at all. Lord knows what the poor layman makes of it.

Bernstein seems to know his subject very well, and to have checked and documented his material very thoroughly, but he needs to decide what knowledge level he is writing for, and get his expositions tailored to it.

Before buying the book, borrow it from the library, and make sure it is going to give you what you are looking for.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By John Gale on May 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This portable little 212 page Harvard Press (2013) hardback, measuring about 18 by 11 cm, packs a particle physics punch far above its weight. Author Dr. Jeremy Bernstein, who over 50 years has been there, done that in the rapidly developing field of high energy physics, gives us a neat survey of the unfolding atomic structure from 1897 to today. He chooses to present the now bewildering family of particles in terms of a colour palette, starting with the basic primary colours of the macro parts typically taught in the 1950's, then proceeding to the secondary micro subcomponents, and lastly the 'pastels' which brings us fully up to date with the Higgs Boson, squarks, and other weird creatures. Berstein thus dissects the atom logically rather than just follow the time line of discovery, which can be disjointed.
Avoiding mathematics, the account is always interesting and anecdotal.
There is a useful set of appendices including an account of the modern investigative tools used, and what could lie ahead in particle physics,
A great buy at Amazon's low price.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Frank J. Regan on March 4, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A good introduction to particles or the modern physical investigation to the present date. Not as east to read as the elements by Phillip Ball, but a good supplement.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Terry on April 21, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book provides an intro to the taxonomy of particles -- it is descriptive rather than mathematical -- for those persons looking for a deeper treatment, this book will only provide descriptive info.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Format: Kindle Edition
A well written treatise on a complex subject for the average reader, with only a basic understanding of particle physics. It answered many questions for me although I needed to read some sections a second time to get my head around them, My limitation.
I enjoyed it and will keep it on KINDLE for a future second read.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
A Palette of Particles
This item: A Palette of Particles
Price: $15.18
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com