From the author of the bestselling E=MC2, a brilliantly descriptive analysis of one of the most powerful forces that controls the universe - electricity
For centuries, electricity was viewed as little more than a curious property of certain substances that sparked when rubbed. Then, in the 1790s, Alessandro Volta began the scientific investigation that ignited an explosion of knowledge and invention, transforming our world. The force that once seemed inconsequential was revealed to be responsible for everything from the structure of the atom to the functioning of our brains.
A superb storyteller, Bodanis weaves tales of romance, divine inspiration, and fraud through lucid accounts of scientific breakthrough. The great discoverers come to life in all their brilliance and idiosyncrasy, including the visionary Michael Faraday, who struggled against the prejudices of the British class system, and Alexander Graham Bell, driven to invent by his love for a young deaf student. From the cold waters of the Atlantic, to the streets of Hamburg during a World War II firestorm and the interior of the human body, Electric Universe is a mesmerizing journey of discovery by a master science writer.
Hugely impressive. No one makes complex science more fascinating and accessible - and indeed more pleasurable - than David Bodanis - Bill Bryson
A technological odyssey complete with heroes and villains, triumph and tragedy - a true scientific adventure - Simon Singh, author of BIG BANG and FERMAT'S LAST THEOREM
Bodanis unpeels these layers of the electrical onion expertly; his writing is vigorous and sometimes ecstatic . . . ELECTRIC UNIVERSE is a high-voltage performance - DAILY MAIL
A compelling, fast-paced read - OBSERVER
David Bodanis studied mathematics, physics and history at the University of Chicago, and for many years taught the 'Intellectual Tool-Kit' course at Oxford University. The author of many books including the New York Times bestseller The Secret House and E=mc2, which was adapted into the PBS documentary Einstein's Big Idea, he is also a futurist and business advisor who has worked for the Royal Dutch Shell Scenario Prediction unit, modelling economic futures, as well as for the future planning unit at the World Economic Forum. He has been a popular speaker at TED conferences and at Davos, and most recently helped run an international study for the UK Treasury on the future of high-frequency trading. Bodanis's work has been published in the Financial Times, the Guardian, and the New York Times. He lives in London.