This book delivers what I call 'firm science' that is physics and chemistry without all the tedious maths and formulas.
One intriguing investigation is into what would happen if we pulled the plug on the Pacific Ocean and drained the sea, another looks at eliminating the common cold virus by isolating all humans, yet another into how one person could find another on a depopulated planet. Most of these situations are impossible. All are unwise but thinking about them is mind play at its best!
Us humans are not so good at thinking about the vast and the fantastically tiny. “What if” uses new units of measurement (as well as the standard ones) to describe these phenomena outside of normal human range; height in giraffes, energy in annual household consumption and, likelihood in lightning strikes.
This is further enlivened by cute and pertinent cartoons and footnotes, for the geeks among us there is a huge bibliography.
Title : What if : serious scientific answers to absurd hypothetical questions
Author : Randall Munroe
Reviewed by Christine O., Takapuna Library
I've worked in libraries on the North Shore of Auckland for over 20 years. I like my fiction to be credible and my non-fiction to be accessible.