BookBrowse Reviews The Universe Within by Neil Shubin

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The Universe Within

Discovering the Common History of Rocks, Planets, and People

by Neil Shubin

The Universe Within
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  • First Published:
    Jan 2013, 240 pages
    Paperback:
    Oct 2013, 240 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Jo Perry

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Paleontologist Neil Shubin, takes us on an exhilarating ride through the workings of science and gives a fascinating glimpse into the vast universe's many constituents.

The Universe Within is paleontologist and evolutionary biologist Neil Shubin's exhilarating and accessible history of the universe for non-scientists, a grand tour of the 13.75 billion years from the Big Bang to speculation about the future of humankind, our planet and the cosmos. Shubin surveys inner and outer space – he examines cells, genes and atomic particles, as well as global geological catastrophes and massive cosmic events. Though the trip is dizzying in scope, we keep our bearings because a central idea, one that Shubin repeatedly demonstrates and celebrates, steadies us: everything in the universe is connected to everything else, ourselves included. As Shubin explains, "Written inside us is the birth of the stars, the movement of heavenly bodies across the sky, even the origin of days themselves."

Greenland Shubin begins and ends his book with an account of an expedition to...

About the Author
Neil Shubin deserves a place among the fascinating scientists he profiles. He is the Robert R. Bensley Professor at the University of Chicago, and is also the Associate Dean, Biological Sciences Division. He is a Professor on the Committee on Evolutionary Biology, and serves as a Provost at The Field Museum in Chicago. Shubin works in the fields of organismal biology, anatomy, evolutionary biology, and paleontology, searching for "mechanisms behind the evolutionary origin of new anatomical features and faunas." In 2004 he was part of the team that discovered 375 million-year-old fossil Tiktaalik, the "missing link" between sea animals and creatures that walked on land. His first book for non-scientists was Your Inner Fish, A Journey into the 3.5-Billion-Year History of the Human Body. See Neil Shubin explain to Stephen Colbert how our bodies contain a "tree of life"...

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