Reviews

Hyperspace, Michio Kaku

Anchor Books

Mark Haddon

"Among the best of its genre to appear in recent years..."

New York Times Book Review

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'Hyperspace: A Scientific Odyssey Through Parallel Universes, Time Warps and the Tenth Dimension'

Hyperspace, upon first sight, screams 'physics' and for the most part that is completely true.  However, Kaku has approached a rather tricky area of the subject from a lay-perspective and broken it down into a sensible and enjoyable story of the search for the higher dimensions.

As a self-confessed Mathematician the beginning of the book drew me in quite quickly; it tells the tale of when the first 'suggestions' of a supposed fourth dimension were made within the scientific community, during a time such things were unthought-of.  The history of Riemann's work and the effect it had on the study of the fourth dimension was fascinating and the book highlighted the importance of Riemann geometry, and even Number Theory, within the study of higher-dimensions - a connection not easily seen. 

In a way reminiscent of Simon Singh books, Hyperspace follows a very chronological format, making it easy to follow.  From Riemann it moves through the era of Einstein's work, ending in the present day and with the work of Stephen Hawking.  In the latter part of the book the physics does begin to get a little  confusing and is most definitely not light reading.  However there are ample diagrams throughout and the language is far from complex.  The 'notes' chapter at the end is also full of additional comments and references for the more eager of readers.

The end of the book drifts slightly from the original theme and gives a brief account of the fate of the solar system, galaxy, universe and ultimately, civilisation.  At times I found the last couple of chapters a tad repetitive, but my attention rarely waned and I was left feeling, if nothing else, a little wiser about the space around me!

 

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Reviewed on 08/12/2004 by Angela

 

Reviewed item details

ISBN: 0-385-47705-8

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Comments

As a self-confessed comment writer, the beginning of this review drew me in quite quickly, it gives the reader a first 'suggestion' of what the book is about.

In a way reminiscent of her emails, Cook reviewed this book using words. My attention rarely waned and I was left feeling, if nothing else, a little wiser.

on 14/12/2004


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