Unthinkable: Book summary and reviews of Unthinkable by Helen Thomson

Unthinkable

An Extraordinary Journey Through the World's Strangest Brains

by Helen Thomson

Unthinkable by Helen Thomson X
Unthinkable by Helen Thomson
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Book Summary

Award-winning science writer Helen Thomson unlocks the biggest mysteries of the human brain by examining nine extraordinary cases.

Our brains are far stranger than we think. We take it for granted that we can remember, feel emotion, navigate, empathise and understand the world around us, but how would our lives change if these abilities were dramatically enhanced – or disappeared overnight?

Helen Thomson has spent years travelling the world, tracking down incredibly rare brain disorders. In Unthinkable she tells the stories of nine extraordinary people she encountered along the way. From the man who thinks he's a tiger to the doctor who feels the pain of others just by looking at them to a woman who hears music that's not there, their experiences illustrate how the brain can shape our lives in unexpected and, in some cases, brilliant and alarming ways.

Story by remarkable story, Unthinkable takes us on an unforgettable journey through the human brain. Discover how to forge memories that never disappear, how to grow an alien limb and how to make better decisions. Learn how to hallucinate and how to make yourself happier in a split second. Find out how to avoid getting lost, how to see more of your reality, even how exactly you can confirm you are alive. Think the unthinkable.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Thomson has a gift for making the complex and strange understandable and relatable. Oliver Sacks is noted as an inspiration and, indeed, this book will appeal to his many fans." - Library Journal (starred review)

"Thomson emphasizes 'we are our brains,' convincingly showing that these strange minds belong to people from whom much can be learned, in a book that will please fans of the late Oliver Sacks." - Publishers Weekly

"A user-friendly tour of the brain and the curious things that go on inside of it, from splendidly practical visions to debilitating hallucinations." - Kirkus Reviews

"A great science writer knows what is interesting to the reader, and here Thomson shines. Her book is tailor-made for anyone who loves intellectual brain trivia. This book is a chef's tasting menu of fascinating things about your brain." - The Washington Post

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Author Information

Helen Thomson

Helen Thomson is an award-winning freelance journalist, editor and author.

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