December 3, 2007

Best science books 2007: Washington Post

Via Uncertain Principles, I see that The Washington Post has a holiday gift guide list of books! I'm going to pull a little more broadly from the list than Orzel did in his post:

  • Einstein by Jurgen Neffe
  • The Lost World of James Smithson by Heather Ewing (bio of man who initially funded the Smithsonian)
  • Nature's Engraver by Jenny Uglow (bio of nature artist Thomas Bewick)
  • Something in the Air by Marc Fisher (history of radio)
  • The Toothpick by Henry Petroski (pop engineering)
  • Medical Apartheid by Harriet A. Washington (a history of The Tuskegee Syphilis Study)
  • Body of Work by Christine Montross (med school memoir)
  • The Body Has a Mind of Its Own by Sandra Blakeslee and Matthew Blakeslee (neuroscience)
  • Musicophilia by Oliver Sacks
  • Passions and Tempers by Noga Arikha (history of the humoural theory of health)
  • Vaccine by Arthur Allen
  • Cheating Destiny by James S. Hirsch (caring for diabetes)

Not much in the way of straightforward science writing in the list, as evidenced by the frequent need for me to annotate the items to show their relevance. On the other hand, it's quite a varied list of things off the beaten path. Given all the other lists I've highlighted, this one certainly brings some breadth.

BTW, I do promise to post about something other than science books eventually. I'm just having too much fun with it right now! If you know of a list out there that you would like me to highlight, just let me know.


Anonymous said...

Could you make a list of the best mathematics and computer science books of 2007?

It would be very interesting to see what's your opinion! BTW, you have here a nice clean blog.

John Dupuis said...

Thanks for the kind words, Anon.

If I come across a list of math & cs books I'll certainly post it. The Amazon list I posted a few weeks ago does have some computing books.

As for my own preferences, well, I didn't really read enough 2007 books to make a list but I did really enjoy Dreaming in Code by Scott Rosenberg. A couple of reviews of 2007 books are in the pipeline, though.