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Summary

A Sunday Times best seller.

A breathtaking and beautiful exploration of our planet, this groundbreaking audiobook accompanies the BBC One TV series, providing the deepest answers to the simplest questions.

'What is motion?'

'Why is every snowflake different?'

'Why is life symmetrical?'

To answer these and many other questions, Professor Brian Cox uncovers some of the most extraordinary natural events on Earth and in the universe and beyond.

From the immensity of the universe and the roundness of Earth to the form of every single snowflake, the forces of nature shape everything we see. Pushed to extremes, the results are astonishing. In seeking to understand the everyday world, the colours, structure, behaviour and history of our home, we develop the knowledge and techniques necessary to step beyond the everyday and approach the universe beyond.

Forces of Nature takes you to the great plains of the Serengeti, the volcanoes of Indonesia and the precipitous cliffs in Nepal to the humpback whales of the Caribbean and the northern lights of the Arctic. Brian will answer questions on Earth that will illuminate our understanding of the universe.

Think you know our planet?

Think again.

©2017 Professor Brian Cox and Andrew Cohen (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic reviews

"In this book of the acclaimed BBC2 TV series, Professor Cox shows us the cosmos as we have never seen it before - a place full of the most bizarre and powerful natural phenomena." ( Sunday Express)
"Engaging, ambitious and creative." ( Guardian)
"Cox's romantic, lyrical approach to astrophysics all adds up to an experience that feels less like homework and more like having a story told to you. A really good story, too." ( Guardian)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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Supporting documents are needed

Would you listen to Forces of Nature again? Why?

I probably wouldn't listen to this book again, however some sections/chapters of this book were fascinating and would probably warrant a re-listen.

What other book might you compare Forces of Nature to, and why?

A short history of nearly anything by Bill Bryson. Although Bryson's book has the edge for me as Bryson was able to explain the physics without reference to a diagram. It was really annoying that in this book the narration was clearly referring to equations or diagrams that existed in the print version. So this audible was lacking supporting material.Some bits you can visualise in your mind what is being discussed which is fine. However. for some of the concepts being explained due to the technicality it's just not possible to follow without the supporting diagram or formula.

Have you listened to any of Samuel West’s other performances? How does this one compare?

No

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Physics answers the questions to your questions on nature.

Any additional comments?

Although I had negative comments about the lack of supporting documents, I still think this is a very good work and worth listening to if you have interests in Physics. If you have no prior knowledge of physics probably no worth listening to just yet, Or might be worth listening to if you have seen the TV series.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Great!

Very informative and intriguing. It made me question my very inquisitive about our universe. 😁

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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fantastic book

everyone should listen to this... it's great! a celebration of the beautiful patterns and principles that lie in wait to be discovered by the curious. To understand the rainbow is not to unweave its beauty but to appreciate it more fully.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • A
  • 02-08-17

Brilliant.

Beauriful, brilliant and awe inspiring. A accessible and magnificent read. Highly Recomend this to anyone, even if science doesn't interest you.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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great book

I really enjoyed this.

For all of us who still wonder how things work but we left physics and chemistry behind when we left secondary school this is a great book.

Enjoying also is the fact that Cox reminds us of his music background. so it's not just another anorak bleeting out endless theories and equations that Joe blogs can't fathom. He reminds us he's one of us.

might just listen again ! ! !

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • John
  • Epping
  • 19-06-18

superb!

Tough going at times for my GCSE level (and very distant) physics but delivered so passionately and entertainingly it kept me engaged to the last.

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Something between my ears hurts.<br />

Cox & Cohen have written another brilliant book getting across complex ideas in a relatively simple way. Samuel West's narration was 1st class helping the science sink in. I may need to listen once again to get all of concepts but this will hardly be a chore. If you're even vaguely interested in why stuff is how it is then you should give this book a go.

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Sciences for scientists

Would you consider the audio edition of Forces of Nature to be better than the print version?

I have not seen the printed version. I really enjoyed listening to Dr Cox book. Maybe if there are some diagrams or the Mathematical equations written down in the book it would help sometimes but overal, having the adio version allows your mind to picture what he is talking about instead of focusing on the reading.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Forces of Nature?

It's a very technical book and that's precisely why I loved it.
Understanding why planets are shaped like a sphere and why some planets or galaxies are shaped like disks was very interestinig. More day t day concepts like a snow flake or the tides, are also great to cover.

What about Samuel West’s performance did you like?

I really enjoyed his pace, voice, tone. perfect to me

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

coming to explain basic day to day like the snow flakes or tides is brilliant.

Any additional comments?

I would not recommend this book if you do not have a mininmum of
1) scientific background
2) visual mind to picture what he is talking about when he refers to objects in movements, rotations, ...

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Too much physics

Not a book for the average Joe, seemed to vary alot in terms of level- some bits more accessible than other bits.

2 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Diagrams are the Death of Audiobooks

It was near junction 26 of the M1 that I realised this book's worst problem. A book written by a Professor of life, the universe and everything within it usually contains several happy little diagrams that make it possible for 'normal' people like me to understand the higher level of science that the book contains. Without the diagrams you're left swimming (drowning) in insane amounts of facts. Facts are great, but if you're after a book that you want to read and not think to hard about - this is not the book you are looking for.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Philomath
  • 13-06-17

Complicated in its simplicity

Brian Cox and Andrew Cohen have the ability to explain science in a fashion that still maintains depth, yet you don't need to be a scientist to understand it. This is simpler said than done, specially when you explain all of what is out there from its simplest components.

The authors passion is carried vividly in this book, that even the few equations that are provided sound like poetry.

This book is not too simple, but definitely a gem. It is yet another up to date explanation of science in the cutting edge, where progress is moving faster than books can be written.

Highly recommended for those who want to be informed of where we are and are willing to strain their mind just a little, the lovers of science.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Sharey
  • 02-08-17

Very Good

You will need to engage your brain to follow these complex concepts, so do not expect an easy listen. That said, once you have shifted gear to listen very intently, West will carefully deliver Cox's fascinating explanations of the forces of nature to the average person who is not well-versed in physics. If you are, however, this book may be too elementary for you and you might find this book too pedestrian. If you do get in over your head, just listen and pick up what you can!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Chip C.
  • 13-07-17

And I thought I had read it all ...

No, I hadn't. I also thought I knew most of the basics of this physics, astronomy and other natural sciences stuff. I didn't. This is a very well written and narrated book. A fun listen! Particularly for the price.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Great and powerful IDE
  • 24-07-17

good read nice examples

Brian Cox is a great job of making complicated things easier to understand by using great examples that are very relatable.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Kelly's Creek
  • 15-06-18

I love having science explained to me.

This book is based on a t.v.series of which I only saw a couple of episodes. After listening to the book I am planning to hunt down the shows. Seemingly simple questions are given careful attention,including the history of the search for the solution, some math, the current answer and some speculation. Very enjoyable.

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  • Y.
  • 17-02-18

Amazing book! Wish it was longer

Wonderful book on scientific thought and the study of the universe. It is no science textbook, but you need some background in high school science to get the full impact.

My favourite thing about this book is the passion and wonder for science that jumps from the “page”, so to speak. I wish it was a longer book!

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  • Mark D. Schnittman
  • 02-02-18

Interesting and will written

Brian Cox has done a wonderful job with this book. He tells the story of science by starting each chapter with a seemingly simple question, and synthetizes a rich fabric of physics, chemistry, biology, biochemistry, and mathematics to formulate a surprisingly understandable answer to each.

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  • Blaise Freeman
  • 26-01-18

excellent language and descriptions

This is similar to A Brief History if Time or anything by Neil Degrasse Tyson. it's based on a TV series but I wouldn't have guessed that if the author hadn't mentioned it. very natural language and relatively easy to follow. I enjoy this topic a lot and am always looking to better understand these kinds of concepts that are the basis of reality but often very difficult to grasp or explain.

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  • Paul de Jong
  • 21-12-17

inspiring!

Better than science fiction. Science is so fascinating and this book really makes one appreciate it. Thank you!

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  • Sylvia Rivera
  • 18-11-17

Enjoyable and thoughtfully challenging

Excellent book! It is not easy listening; you must be present. I'll likely listen again.