Thursday, 19 January 2012

Exciting Elements

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Long gone are the thoughts of the elements being something resigned to a stuffy periodic table in a science lab, as Sam Kean brings the elements to life in his new book “The Disappearing Spoon” 1. It is a wonderful book, telling untold, unusial and often fascinating story behind the elements of the periodic table. This book is filled with wonderful anecdotes that the reader cannot help but quote for weeks afterwards. Each chapter focuses on a group of elements, and while the concept may seem dull, the book is written in a light and personal way, which gives its stories a page turning quality. It is critically acclaimed, having been short listed for the Royal Society Winton prize. It has also achieved praising reviews from newspapers like the Guardian, which describes the book by saying “The pace is enthusiastic, the tone and language are pitched at the young or the non-chemical and the examples are pleasingly unexpected” 2. The book is written for those with no scientific background, and so is accessible to old and young alike. It is an enjoyable read and is highly recommended.

1. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Disappearing-Spoon-Sam-Kean/dp/0857520261/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1326388365&sr=8-3
2. http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2011/nov/10/disappearing-spoon-sam-kean-review

E Markham (2012). Exciting Elements Blogspot

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