A Brief History of Time and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Buy New
$20.86
Qty:1
  • List Price: $30.00
  • Save: $9.14 (30%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
Add to Cart
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 all 2 images

A Brief History of Time: And Other Essays Hardcover – September 1, 1998


See all 37 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$20.86
$14.35 $14.28


Frequently Bought Together

A Brief History of Time: And Other Essays + The Grand Design + The Universe in a Nutshell
Price for all three: $64.43

Buy the selected items together
  • The Grand Design $20.73
  • The Universe in a Nutshell $22.84

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam; 10 Anv edition (September 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553109537
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553109535
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.2 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (521 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #28,719 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Stephen Hawking, one of the most brilliant theoretical physicists in history, wrote the modern classic A Brief History of Time to help nonscientists understand the questions being asked by scientists today: Where did the universe come from? How and why did it begin? Will it come to an end, and if so, how? Hawking attempts to reveal these questions (and where we're looking for answers) using a minimum of technical jargon. Among the topics gracefully covered are gravity, black holes, the Big Bang, the nature of time, and physicists' search for a grand unifying theory. This is deep science; these concepts are so vast (or so tiny) as to cause vertigo while reading, and one can't help but marvel at Hawking's ability to synthesize this difficult subject for people not used to thinking about things like alternate dimensions. The journey is certainly worth taking, for, as Hawking says, the reward of understanding the universe may be a glimpse of "the mind of God." --Therese Littleton

Review

“[Hawking] can explain the complexities of cosmological physics with an engaging combination of clarity and wit. . . . His is a brain of extraordinary power.”—The New York Review of Books
 
“Lively and provocative . . . Mr. Hawking clearly possesses a natural teacher’s gifts—easy, good-natured humor and an ability to illustrate highly complex propositions with analogies plucked from daily life.”—The New York Times
 
“Even as he sits helpless in his wheelchair, his mind seems to soar ever more brilliantly across the vastness of space and time to unlock the secrets of the universe.”—Time
 
“This book marries a child’s wonder to a genius’s intellect. We journey into Hawking’s universe while marvelling at his mind.”—The Sunday Times (London)
 
“A masterful summary of what physicists now think the world is made of and how it got that way.”—The Wall Street Journal
 
“Charming and lucid . . . [A book of] sunny brilliance.”—The New Yorker

More About the Author

Stephen Hawking's ability to make science understandable and compelling to a lay audience was established with the publication of his first book, A Brief History of Time, which has sold nearly 10 million copies in 40 languages. Hawking has authored or participated in the creation of numerous other popular science books, including The Universe in a Nutshell, A Briefer History of Time, On the Shoulders of Giants, The Illustrated On the Shoulders of Giants, and George's Secret Key to the Universe.

Customer Reviews

Found the book very interesting!
Ruby magne
Stephen hawking is one of the most brilliant scientists of our time, and in this book he demonstrates how he is equally one of the best science writers.
Giant Panda
Hawking does a wonderful job of making very complex ideas relatively clear and easy to understand.
J. Achatz

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

194 of 209 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 3, 2000
Format: Paperback
Most people know that Hawking is a brilliant physicist, but after reading this book, one develops a respect for his other talents as well. Most noticeable is Stephen Hawking's ability to make very complicated ideas seem quite clear through good explanations, clear comparisons to real life events, and a soft humor. The organization of chapers mostly follows a chronological order, which gives a sense of history from Aristotle to present day, yet also establishes concepts in an order that builds on itself. One also realizes that A Brief History of Time was written by a writer, not a scientist who happened to put ideas to paper. This makes a big difference in the enjoyment of a book, since good information in a dry, dull form can be difficult to read (remember trying to keep your eyes open while reading a dull textbook in a subject of interest?). On the other hand, interesting information presented in an interesting manner make A Brief History of Time as much of a 'page-turner' as physics can be.
In summary, a fountain of information from galaxies and black holes to quantum mechanics presented in such a way that is not only as easy to understand as it can be, but is an enjoyable experience to read.
1 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
57 of 60 people found the following review helpful By David P. Caldwell on September 25, 2006
Format: Paperback
I must say my first reaction was to be surprised at how much better Hawking is at explaining modern physics than my college instructors were. Heisenberg's uncertainty principle was just an equation I learned. Hawking made it seem like common sense.

Hawking tries a little too hard to be witty at times (and punctuates all of his jokes with exclamation points! just in case you missed them!), but all-in-all, this was a quite readable account of what's presently known about cosmology. I use the term "presently" guardedly, as just recently there was some big finding about dark matter (it exists!), but from now on, when there are new findings in physics, I want Hawking to explain them to me, because I feel like then I might understand them. That's why you should read this book.

The reason you should not read this book is because you have no interest in wrestling with abstractions with which you will never interact in daily life, and would rather read about global warming or Darfur or something a bit more topical and practical. This was still a hard read, and I feel like I grasped maybe 80% of it. For you to decide, but for a former engineering student, this was something I wish I had read when I was taking physics.
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
30 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Neil Scott Mcnutt on July 4, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A Brief History of Time has had a tremendous impact on scientific thought since its initial publication in 1988. The Big Bang and Black Holes have become parts of our common vocabulary. Why review this book now? Perhaps some readers are not aware of a special Commemorative Edition of this book that was issued as an "Updated Edition" on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of its initial publication. In the "Acknowledgements" at the beginning of the book, Hawking gives great credit to his editors and friends who have helped him improve the book "considerably" in revising the text. In this Edition, Hawking states "I have taken the opportunity to update the book and include new theoretical and observational results obtained since the book was first published. I have included a new chapter on wormholes and time travel. I also describe the progress that has been made recently in finding dualities or correspondences between apparently different theories of physics." A discussion of the significance of cosmic microwave background and its fluctuations is included. These are great reasons to reread this classic work, which has to be one of the finest in the history of science.
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
49 of 54 people found the following review helpful By magellan HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on September 11, 2002
Format: Paperback
This is probably the most readable book on those mind-boggling questions of cosmology and theoretical physics that engage many of the top minds today. Hawking explains it all in easily understandable language, almost conversationally, and even then, sometimes the concepts are tough sledding. But overall, this is a readable and enjoyable trip along some of the high roads of contemporary physical thought by one of its greatest thinkers. It had been some years since I'd had the time to read much about astronomy and cosmology, and this little book was a great place to start reading up on the subject again.
I usually try to do reviews that aren't simply a rehash of the material in the book, but I would like to mention one thing Hawking discusses since it was so ironic. I was taught, of course, about the Big Bang theory in college (and no, it's not about a hot party at Jimi Hendrix's place back in the 60's), and by that time it was pretty much accepted as an established fact. But Hawking points out that originally he had trouble convincing his fellow physicists that a singularity such as the big bang had actually occurred. His fellow physicists eventually came around to his view of things, but it took a while. However, Hawking discovered later that if certain quantum phenomena were brought into the picture, the necessity for a singularity disappeared--so he could have saved himself the trouble of the original controversy!
Overall, a great classic by a great scientist and teacher.
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

Customer Images

Search

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?