The instant Sunday Times bestseller -- a riveting story of rebellion and science
'A triumph . . . we are left in a world that is not disenchanted by science, but even more magical' Julian Baggini, Financial Times
'Carlo Rovelli is a genius and an amazing communicator' Neil Gaiman
In June 1925, twenty-three-year-old Werner Heisenberg, suffering from hay fever, had retreated to the treeless, wind-battered island of Helgoland in the North Sea in order to think. Walking all night, by dawn he had wrestled with an idea that would transform the whole of science and our very conception of the world.
In Helgoland Carlo Rovelli tells the story of the birth of quantum physics and its bright young founders who were to become some of the most famous Nobel winners in science. It is a celebration of youthful rebellion and intellectual revolution. An invitation to a magical place.
Here Rovelli illuminates competing interpretations of this science and offers his own original view, describing the world we touch as a fabric woven by relations. Where we, as every other thing around us, exist in our interactions with one another, in a never-ending game of mirrors.
A dazzling work from one of our most celebrated scientists and master storyteller, Helgoland transports us to dizzying heights, reminding us of the many pleasures of the life of the mind.
Translated by Erica Segre and Simon Carnell
Popular science has rarely been so good
Theoretical physics often feels rather mystical. This mind-bending, lively book by the bestselling physicist Carlo Rovelli reinforces that other-wordly feeling. . . unforgettable
Travelogue meets biography meets a masterful explanation of quantum theory in this warm and fascinating account
A great tonic for long-isolated minds . . . a thrilling story, written with Rovelli's accustomed wit and panache. After reading him, you'll look at the grains of beach sand between your toes with an entirely new eye
My other great love these days is for Carlo Rovelli, who is often called the poet of physics. He writes elegant, wondering, enlarging books on time and quantum theory, much in the spirit of a priest bringing the word of God to his congregation, and I've found it good for my soul to be confronted with how little I understand the world and everything in it
The greatest populariser of physics today. . . Rovelli's clarity of exposition would be enough to make the book a triumph. What elevates it even more is the deep humanity he brings to his subject . . . we are left in a world that is not disenchanted by science, but even more magical
It is the genius of Carlo Rovelli - in my opinion the most poetic and lucid popular science writer since Richard Dawkins - to evoke the mystical aspect of physics. . . His new book, Helgoland is his most beautiful yet. . . leaves an unforgettable impression of its author as a man struggling at the furthest limits of human comprehension
Another brilliant book by Rovelli, who is emerging as the most approachable yet authoritative contemporary writer about quantum physics. . . you'll have fun
Rovelli is a deep-thinking, restlessly inquiring spirit. . . His books continue a tradition of popular scientific writing from Galileo to Darwin that disappeared in the academic specialisations of the past century
One of the warmest, most elegant and most lucid interpreters of the dazzling enigmas of his discipline... A momentous book
In this essay from his forthcoming collection, There Are Places in the World Where Rules Are Less Important Than Kindness, titled ‘Lolita and the Blue Icarus’, Carlo Rovelli writes about Nabokov’s foray into lepidoptery – and his surprising recognition as “a scientist of real worth”.
Oscars season is upon us – did you know that some of the Best Actress and Best Actor nominees narrated Penguin audiobooks? Listen to some familiar faces read aloud from much-loved titles below.