The Origin of the Universe by John D. Barrow (1994)

Books & Boots

In the beginning, the universe was an inferno of radiation, too hot for any atoms to survive. In the first few minutes, it cooled enough for the nuclei of the lighter elements to form. Only millions of years later wold the cosmos be cool enough for whole atoms to appear, followed soon by simple molecules, and after billions of years by the complex sequence of events that saw the condensation of material into stars and galaxies. Then, with the appearance of stable planetary environments, the complicated products of biochemistry were nurtured, by processes we still do not understand. (The Origin of the Universe, p.xi)

In the late 1980s and into the 1990s science writing became fashionable and popular. A new generation of science writers poured forth a wave of books popularising all aspects of science. The ones I remember fell into two broad categories, evolution and astrophysics. Authors such as…

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