- Hardcover: 544 pages
- Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; First Edition edition (December 6, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1455589128
- ISBN-13: 978-1455589128
- Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.6 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 32 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #513,814 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Earth in Human Hands: Shaping Our Planet's Future First Edition Edition
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"In his wonderful writing style, Dr. Grinspoon spells it out: A single species is inducing more profound changes to our planet than any other organism in geologic history. It's us. If you have family and friends here on Earth, read this book. The Earth is in our hands."―Bill Nye "The Science Guy", New York Times bestselling author of Unstoppable: Harnessing Science to Change the World
"Earth in Human Hands is a page-turning masterpiece of speculative nonfiction that will keep new and veteran science aficionados spellbound for hours at a time. It is quite simply the kind of book that can change a young reader's life, or inspire parents and teachers to do the same...Grinspoon ties together a dozen disparate themes pulled from a host of sub-fields seamlessly, making the book a delightful, flowing feast of science and commentary...Given Earth in the title, one might expect the book to revolve solely around our planet, the immediate concerns of humanity, or the growing anxiety voiced by environmentalists and a few scientists over our growing impact on this world. Grinspoon delivers all that with seeming ease. But he takes an epic, cosmic course to do so, one successfully charted by only a handful of visionaries before him. It's a journey that ranges from the planets Venus and Mars, where he deftly reviews the critical contributions NASA and other agencies have added to our understanding of our home by studying these alien worlds, to the farthest reaches of space and time revealed by modern astronomy....The only disappointment was when the last page was turned, and I found myself wishing there was more.If Carl Sagan were alive today, and had available to him all the science done since he left us, this is the book he would write....Earth in Human Hands is Cosmos for the 21st century, retooled for a new wave of readers, and hopped up on the best science modern research has to offer. ...Your copy of this masterpiece is destined to become a familiar friend, proudly dog-eared and creased with age, after being read and reread time after time, and year after year."―Daily Kos
"In flavorful prose, [Grinspoon] dives deep into the history of life on Earth (and beyond) and muses on ways that geoengineering, interplanetary colonization or contact with galactic civilizations could define this human-dominated epoch just as much as climate change, overpopulation and resource scarcity...What comes next? This hybrid of a meditative memoir, a scientific primer and a call to arms presents possible answers. "―Scientific American
"Grinspoon's writing is clear, informal and funny...like a pub conversation with a well-read, quick mind."―Nature
"Earth in Human Hands is a remarkable synthesis of natural history, planetary science, extinction histories, Earth's climate and the human effect on the world...If we do it right, the 21st century won't be the peak of human achievement, but rather our initial foray into a brilliant, uncertain but full-of-potential future."―Forbes
"Rarely is a science book profoundly informative, highly entertaining, and surprisingly filled with interesting tidbits as a memoir. Such is the case, however, from the new book Earth in Human Hands...This is a book that any thinking person will have been glad to read. One could hardly ask for more."―Astronomy Magazine
"With an erudite yet appealingly informal style that showcases his nimble mastery of this science, Grinspoon takes you on a deep-time tour...In our hyper-technical world, we need science communicators like Grinspoon (and Bill Nye and Neil deGrasse Tyson) who can translate their expertise into accessible explanations and interesting stories. All complex topics have interesting stories; it takes a particular talent to unlock them....This is one of the great strengths of "Earth in Human Hands": Grinspoon's ability to describe and explain momentous Earth and space events and discoveries, and then connect to their cultural and social influence; science as part of everyday life and our cultural history, not separate from it."―NPR Boston
"David Grinspoon has done it again: cracked open our universe with a scientific inquiry that is as inspiring and engaging as it is profound. Where others see inevitable catastrophe, Grinspoon sees historic opportunity. Grinspoon is a gifted storyteller and his narrative is the rare confluence of authoritative and thought-provoking science and rollicking fun. Earth in Human Hands is a must read for anyone interested in evolution, planetary science, the crisis of the environment, and human survival. Destined to be a classic."―Peter Heller, New York Times bestselling author of The Dog Stars and The Whale Warriors
"David Grinspoon's books are always high-spirited, insightful, elegantly-written, and full of fascinations, but EARTH IN HUMAN HANDS is especially so, because he focuses on our home planet and exciting/dangerous new age, criss-crossing the globe and traveling deep into the unknown reaches of space, where other lifeforms may be facing their own planetary challenges. I'm sure readers will love voyaging through the cosmos with him again, as I do."―Diane Ackerman, New York Times bestselling author of The Human Age: The World Shaped by Us and The Zookeeper's Wife: A War Story
"A beautiful and detailed overview of the ways we must change our thinking if we want to truly understand the transformation in our midst."―Adam Frank, NPR.com
About the Author
David Grinspoon is an astrobiologist, award-winning science communicator, and prize-winning author. In 2013 he was appointed the inaugural Chair of Astrobiology at the Library of Congress. He is a frequent advisor to NASA on space exploration strategy, and is on the team for the Curiosity Mars Rover. Grinspoon's writing has appeared in the New York Times, Slate, Scientific American, Seed, Boston Globe, and the Los Angeles Times.
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The thing that I like most about it is something that is also true of the author in general. It is optimistic. The evidence for climate change is overwhelming and long standing. It goes back literally a century or more. So he doesn't engage with those who want to go down that rabbit hole. It is all about how to address where we are and how to move forward, and he does this from the viewpoint of a planetary scientist.
I liked the perspective of climate on planets over the time that we can study them, and the valuable information that we have from space exploration. He and I have literally grown up in the age of being able to get out into the universe to explore it and not just sit here at home. So that was a cool perspective, full of knowledge that I did not possess.
So take some time and learn a bit about what the future might hold for our beautiful home planet.