“A Short History of Nearly Everything” by Bill Bryson takes a look at the greatest scientific events throughout the course of history. Bryson covers everything from the Big Bang to the beginning stages of civilization in an easy-to-read format. Unlike textbooks, which tend to use dry, boring text, Bryson inserts wit and humor into all of the subjects he covers.
For years, the “National Geographic” series of magazines has taken a look at the world and culture all around us. “The Science Book: Everything You Need to Know About the World and How It Works” by National Geographic has a similar goal, but instead of culture, it looks at science. From chemistry and physics to mathematics, this compendium covers everything you’d want to know about science.
If you’ve ever asked yourself questions such as “how fast can I hit a speed bump while driving and live?,” then the “What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions” book is for you. Penned by Randall Monroe, the creator behind XKCD, this book seeks to answer silly hypothetical questions by using real science.
Famous author Neil deGrasse Tyson is your guide to the stars and beyond in “Death by Black Hole: And Other Cosmic Quandaries.” Neil deGrasse Tyson looks at anomalies like black holes, modern myths like the color of the sun and advanced subjects such as particle physics. With over 42 essays collected into one book, “Death by Black Hole: And Other Cosmic Quandaries” is one book that will keep you busy for hours.
“Sciencia: Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, and Astronomy for All” is a collection of six smaller books into one compendium. This book covers subjects in the realms of physics, chemistry, evolution and more. In addition to the written word, this book also uses original drawings and diagrams to illustrate its points.
6. The Everything Kids’ Science Experiments Book: Boil Ice, Float Water, Measure Gravity-Challenge the World Around You!
“The Everything Kids’ Science Experiments Book: Boil Ice, Float Water, Measure Gravity-Challenge the World Around You!” lets children immediately put into action the theories and concepts introduced in the book. Children will first learn the science behind the experiment and then immediately put that knowledge to the test using common household ingredients found throughout the house.
If you’re more of a visual learner, then you’ll love “Elements: A Visual Exploration of Every Known Atom in the Universe.” This book not only goes over every element on the periodic table but it also shows you how each one manifests itself in the real world.
Any child who grew up in the ’90s has heard of Bill Nye, the scientist who taught children to love science on his television show “Bill Nye: The Science Guy.” Bill Nye is back in “Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation,” this time teaching adults about evolution using easy-to-follow concepts.
It’s easy to get lost when trying to understand science, especially when big words start getting thrown around on a regular basis. “The Science Book (Big Ideas Simply Explained)” takes the biggest ideas in science and explains them using common words and a simple sentence structure. If you’ve never opened a science book in your life, “The Science Book (Big Ideas Simply Explained)” is the science book for you.
“Science Encyclopedia: Atom Smashing, Food Chemistry, Animals, Space, and More!” by National Geographic Kids takes some of the most complicated scientific subjects and makes them easy to understand for children. In addition to written articles, this book also includes color photographs, statistics and experiments.
Women have been one of the driving forces in the field of science for years, and the “Girls Think of Everything: Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women” book is a celebration of female scientists. “Girls Think of Everything: Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women” is a collection of the most prominent women scientists as well as the women scientists who are on the verge of changing the world.
Esteemed biologist Richard Dawkins shows us how the world really works in “The Magic of Reality: How We Know What’s Really True.” Dawkins shows us the most common myths behind tsunamis, evolution and the universe followed by letting us know the real truth.
The brain is an amazing organ, with many different parts of it working together to power our bodies. “National Geographic Kids Brain Games: The Mind-Blowing Science of Your Amazing Brain” unravels the science behind our brains in an easy-to-follow format that kids will love. In addition to written explanations, “National Geographic Kids Brain Games: The Mind-Blowing Science of Your Amazing Brain” also features challenges for children to complete.
Science is all about experimenting, and “101 Great Science Experiments” will give you plenty of ideas for your next big experiment. Whether it’s circulating some heat or measuring the wind, you can complete each experiment in this book using only everyday household items. With large pictures and easy-to-follow instructions, both children and adults will have no problem setting up their experiments.
Science is all about experimenting, and “101 Great Science Experiments” will give you plenty of ideas for your next big experiment. Whether it’s circulating some heat or measuring the wind, you can complete each experiment in this book using only everyday household items. With large pictures and easy-to-follow instructions on each page, both children and adults should have no problems setting up their experiments.
Brian Greene is one of the world’s leading experts on string theory, and in “The Elegant Universe: Superstrings, Hidden Dimensions, and the Quest for the Ultimate Theory,” Greene shares that knowledge with a wider audience. By using easy-to-understand terms and concepts, Greene reveals the mysteries of the universe across 464 pages.
Religion and science don’t often intersect, but “Signposts to God: How Modern Physics and Astronomy Point the Way to Belief” shows us how the two ideas have more in common than we think. Physicist Peter Bussey explains the science behind physics and astronomy while showing readers how these subjects can potentially prove that there is a higher power.
Our DNA still holds many undiscovered secrets, and “The Gene: An Intimate History” presents readers with what we know so far. “The Gene: An Intimate History” shows us how gene research began, what we’ve uncovered and what the future holds.
Encryption is a hot topic in today’s world, and “The Code Book: The Science of Secrecy from Ancient Egypt to Quantum Cryptography” gives readers a history of the science behind it. From ancient civilizations to the present day, this book shows us how secret codes have an effect on our daily lives.
Time is one of biggest scientific mysteries in the known universe, and in “A Brief History of Time,” author Stephen Hawking provides insight into many of these mysteries. Some of the scientific concepts discussed in this book include time travel, alternate dimensions and what happens when time comes to an end.
The “Knowledge Encyclopedia” is a celebration of science, with chapters dedicated to subjects such as space, nature and the human body. With beautiful illustrations featuring plenty of maps and timelines, the “Knowledge Encyclopedia” is an excellent book for the science novice.
“The New York Times Book of Science” is a collection of the biggest scientific breakthroughs of the last 150 years. The New York Times includes everything from artificial intelligence to the cosmos in this massive 560-page tome.
It’s never too early to start getting children excited about science. The “LeapFrog LeapStart 1st Grade Activity Book: Space Science and Thinking Like a Scientist” teaches children the basics of outer space, including the constellations, the cycles of the moon and even the different types of galaxies.
Neil deGrasse Tyson is back with “Origins: Fourteen Billion Years of Cosmic Evolution.” In this book, Neil deGrasse Tyson walks readers through the birth of the galaxy to humankind’s most recent accomplishments in space.
“5,000 Awesome Facts (About Everything!)” is the ultimate collection of scientific knowledge. Even though it’s written for kids, the scientific facts in this book will even astonish adults. This exciting book includes scientific facts on every subject, from sports and toys to robots and space.
The human body is home to a number of scientific procedures, and the “My First Human Body Book” attempts to explain these concepts to young children. By using simple words and lots of pictures, this book explains concepts such as how DNA functions, how your tongue distinguishes different tastes and how the voice box works.
Designed for children ages 8 through 12, the “TIME For Kids Big Book of Science Experiments” includes over 100 amazing science experiments. In this book, kids will make magnets out of household items and learn how the human body works. Each of the 100 experiments features large images and includes a section about how that experiment applies to everyday life.
“Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World” is a look at 50 of the greatest women scientists to ever handle a beaker. This book features women from all fields of science, including mathematics, technology and engineering. In addition to famous names such as Jane Goodall, the book also shines a light on lesser known but still important female scientists, such as Katherine Johnson.
The premise behind “Cook’s Science: How to Unlock Flavor in 50 of our Favorite Ingredients” is that knowing the science behind your favorite ingredients will allow you to unlock their maximum flavor potential. This book explains the science behind ingredients such as pork and quinoa and the best way to cook and prep them.
“Interstellar” was one of the most popular films of 2014, and “The Science of Interstellar” shows the real-life science behind the movie. This book discusses the different parts of the film and compares it to the actual science to prove how the extraordinary events of “Interstellar” are more likely than you thought.
“Cosmos” by Carl Sagan is one of the best-selling non-fiction science books of all time, and you’ll see why the minute you start reading. Sagan covers such expansive topics like the origin of life, the human brain and the birth of galaxies in a writing style that is engaging and easy to follow.
While other books on this list cover evolution, “The Selfish Gene: 40th Anniversary Edition” is the only book to cover it from the perspective of the gene itself. This classic science book by Richard Dawkins is just as relevant now as it was 40 years ago.
“Evolutionary Psychology: The New Science of the Mind” explores human psychology through the lens of evolution. This fascinating book dives into the reasons behind our mating, parenting and survival instincts, among other subjects.
“The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark” by Carl Sagan uses science to disprove many of today’s biggest myths. This book debunks the theory of UFOs in the sky, faith-healing and the ability to communicate with the dead. “The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark” also provides insight into the childhood of Sagan, as the book recounts many of his earliest brushes with science.
“Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies” shows us how science has built and toppled many of the largest civilizations of our time. The book clearly lays out scientific reasons why certain societies have an advantage and also offers insights into the future of humanity.
“Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything” provides a detailed look into the science of economics, showing how economics is at the root of nearly everything in modern society. This book tackles subjects such as determining the importance of parents to exposing the secrets of the Ku Klux Klan. “Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything” will have you looking at economists in a whole new light.
While many of the books on this list try to cover as many topics as possible, “The Hot Zone: The Terrifying True Story of the Origins of the Ebola Virus” only covers one: the Ebola Virus. This book tells the tale of how the Ebola Virus spread and includes new information that will scare you more than any horror movie ever could.
“The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat: And Other Clinical Tales” is an anthology of real stories that defy medical science. This book includes stories about patients who have completely lost their memories and those who can no longer recognize everyday objects.
In “Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space,” author Carl Sagan documents humanity’s first steps into outer space and the events that led up to it. In this book, Sagan also assesses how likely it is that we will travel outside of our galaxy and the concept of extraterrestrial life.
In “Thing Explainer: Complicated Stuff in Simple Words,” author Randall Munroe breaks down scientific breakthrough and objects into easy-to-comprehend words and ideas. While the tone is humorous, readers will walk away with a better understanding of how ordinary objects in their lives work and the science behind them.
“Thinking, Fast and Slow” takes us on a journey into the brain. Author Daniel Kahneman walks readers through the two systems that power how our brains work and the science behind each system.
In “Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers,” author Mary Roach details the science behind cadavers. In addition to showing us how ancient civilizations preserved bodies, the book also shows us some of the groundbreaking techniques that morgues are using today.
“Ghosts: A Natural History: 500 Years of Searching for Proof” looks to prove to readers that ghosts do exist. This book takes readers on a trip through famous haunted houses and attempts to use science to see if ghosts are real.
“Six Easy Pieces: Essentials of Physics Explained by Its Most Brilliant Teacher,” presents an easy read on the science behind physics. The book is a compilation of six different essays which cover topics such as quantum mechanics and gravity.
Cancer is one of the most devastating diseases that is still prevalent today. In “The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer,” author Siddhartha Mukherjee explores the history of cancer and the strides that scientists are making to stamp it out once and for all.
The nuclear bomb is one of the most dangerous weapons in history, and “The Making of the Atomic Bomb: 25th Anniversary Edition” dives into the science and history behind it. You’ll learn about the origins of the weapon and its devastating effects on Hiroshima, among other facts.
In the past few decades, new diseases have cropped up on a frequent basis. “The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance” looks to answer what is causing these diseases to appear and how we can prevent future ones from manifesting.
Not all science is good, and “Bad Science: Quacks, Hacks, and Big Pharma Flacks” aims to show us what causes bad science. This book takes a look at poor scientific claims and bad medicine and shows how these myths and dangerous products get started in the first place.
“Lives of a Cell: Notes of a Biology Watcher” shows how biology influences every facet of our life. From germs and medicine to language, computers and music, this book takes a close look at biological science and the impact it has on our everyday lives.
There is only a two percent difference in the biology between chimps and humans. “The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution and Future of the Human Animal” book dives into the relationship between chimpanzees and people and looks to answer what it is about that two percent difference that makes us so different from primates.