Christopher Potter biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

Christopher Potter
Photo: Joyce Ravid

Christopher Potter

Christopher Potter Biography

Christopher Potter is the author of three books: The Earth Gazers: On seeing ourselves, How to Make a Human Being: A body of evidence and You Are Here: A portable history of the universe.

He is the former publisher and managing director of Fourth Estate, now an imprint of Harper Collins.

As an editor he worked with many writers, including Gilbert Adair, Paul Bailey, Deborah Cadbury, Michael Chabon, Michael Cunningham, Maureen Duffy, Marcus Du Sautoy, James Gleick, Kathryn Harrison, Paul Hoffman, Kate Jennings, Mary McGarry Morris, Hilary Mantel, Mark Merlis, Richard Panek, Annie Proulx, Matt Ridley, Carol Shields, Peter Singer, Simon Singh, Dava Sobel, Kate Summerscale and Salley Vickers.

Christopher Potter's website

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Interview

Christopher Potter discusses You Are Here - a layman's exploration of the universe and our relationship to it, as seen through the lens of today's most cutting-edge scientific thinking.

Why did you write this book?

Like many writers do, I wrote the book to see if I could find answers to some questions that had been bothering me. Some of them are the kind of questions that bother children, who then eventually put them to one side and think about other things. But these questions have gone on bothering me into adulthood. Where did the universe come from? Where are we in the universe? How could something come from nothing? Will the universe come to an end? I suppose it's because science does actually have answers to these sorts of questions that I got interested in science in the first place.

Of course I'm not an expert, so writing this book became my way of finding out how much a general reader - an interested non-scientist - could learn about science if left to his or her own devices.

Was it possible to tell the story of science all in one short book with no equations (well, there is one), and without getting bogged down in technicalities? That was the impulse that kept me writing.


But isn't this a book about the universe?

I use the universe as a way of talking about all of scientific knowledge. In a way, when we look to the horizon of the universe we are looking out to ...

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Books by this Author

Books by Christopher Potter at BookBrowse
The Earth Gazers jacket You Are Here jacket
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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Christopher Potter but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Bill Bryson

    Bill Bryson

    Bill Bryson was born in Des Moines, Iowa. He moved to England, where he worked for The Times and The Independent, and wrote for many major British and American publications.

    Bill Bryson's bestselling books include A Walk... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    You Are Here

    Try:
    A Short History of Nearly Everything
    by Bill Bryson

  • Margaret Lazarus Dean

    Margaret Lazarus Dean

    Margaret Lazarus Dean is the author of The Time It Takes to Fall. She is a recipient of fellowships from the NEA and the Tennessee Arts Commission and is an associate professor of English at the University of Tennessee. Her ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    You Are Here

    Try:
    Leaving Orbit
    by Margaret Lazarus Dean

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