Here is a short list of what you should read this summer in science and science related topics. Some are old, some are new. There is a lot missing from this list, I’m sure, but the summer is short here in Minnesota and we’ll be busy with the corn, so there is not much time.
- The Paleolithic Prescription: A Program of Diet & Exercise and a Design for Living by Eaton, Konner and Shostack. An oldie but a goodie. Read it as a pragmatic science book rather than a self help guide.
- The Kaufman Field Guide to Advanced Birding (Kaufman Field Guides) … a bird book but not an ID guide. More like birding theory. If you are not a birder, not for you. If you are, it is a must-have.
- Death by Black Hole: And Other Cosmic Quandaries by Neil deGrasse Tyson this is a compendium of NdGT’s essays and only one of several excellent books by him, but I had to pick one. Well, OK, I also pick The Sky Is Not the Limit: Adventures of an Urban Astrophysicist, which is essentially an autobiography with many surprising moments. Oh, and if you’ve not seen it, The Pluto Files: The Rise and Fall of America’s Favorite Planet is a must. At least browse through it. LOL.
- Deadly Choices: How the Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us All by Paul Offit … Do with this book what Lewis Black suggests to do with a fossil, but for antivaxers instead of creationists.
- The Science of Kissing: What Our Lips Are Telling Us by Sheril Kirshenbaum … also a romantic gift to give to your sweetie. That’s what I did.
- The Amazing Story of Quantum Mechanics: A Math-Free Exploration of the Science that Made Our World by Jim Kakalios … All of Jim’s stuff is entertaining and educational, somehow.
- Newton and the Counterfeiter:The Unknown Detective Career of the World’s Greatest Scientist by Tom Levenson … I had no idea … Newton, using torture? Well, maybe he did, maybe he didn’t.
- Mothers and Others: The Evolutionary Origins of Mutual Understanding by Sarah Blaffer Hrdy … a must read for all those interested in behavioral biology.
- Bonobo Handshake: A Memoir of Love and Adventure in the Congo by Vanessa Woods … you can’t go wrong with bonobos, but put a brown paper wrapper on it if you take it to the beach.
- I have not read The Wave: In Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks and Giants of the Ocean by Susan Casey but it looks interesting. See also this recent bit of rogue wave news.
- I have not read A Planet of Viruses by Carl Zimmer but all his stuff is good.
- I have not read The Nesting Season: Cuckoos, Cuckolds, and the Invention of Monogamy by Bernd Heinrich but if it is good it will be very good. Anybody read it?
- Perhaps the best science book of the last few years is The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. What, you haven’t read it yet? Just read it.
- Evolution’s Rainbow: Diversity, Gender, and Sexuality in Nature and People, With a New Preface by Joan Roughgarden is the best choice if you’re heading for P-Town or Fire Island. No, but seriously …
What am I missing?
I’m working on my Summer Reading Suggestions: Fiction list but I think I’ve only read one fiction book since last summer so this may be a short list. I may ask my facebook friends to come up with some suggestions that I’ll compile. Feel free to join in on that.