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Most popular at the top

  • The Elementsby Philip Ball

    Oxford University Press 2004; US$ 9.99

    This Very Short Introduction traces the history and cultural impact of the elements on humankind, and examines why people have long sought to identify the substances around them. The book covers from the Greek philosophers who propounded a system with four elements - earth, air, fire, and water - to the scientists who are able to create their own. more...

  • Moleculesby Philip Ball

    Oxford University Press 2003; US$ 9.99

    Molecules are the building blocks of matter. Using the molecules of life as a springboard, Philip Ball provides a new perspective on modern chemistry. He shows how molecular scientists are capturing the dynamism of biological molecules in synthetic systems, promising to reinvent chemistry as the central creative science of the new century. more...

  • Universe of Stoneby Philip Ball

    HarperCollins 2009; US$ 13.99

    Chartres Cathedral, south of Paris, is revered as one of the most beautiful and profound works of art in the Western canon. But what did it mean to those who constructed it in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries?and why was it built at such immense height and with such glorious play of light, in the soaring manner we now call Gothic? In this eminently... more...

  • Branchesby Philip Ball

    Oxford University Press 2009; US$ 21.99

    As part of a trilogy of books exploring the science of patterns in nature, acclaimed science writer Philip Ball here looks at the form and growth of branching networks in the natural world, and what we can learn from them.Many patterns in nature show a branching form - trees, river deltas, blood vessels, lightning, the cracks that form in the glazing... more...

  • Flowby Philip Ball

    Oxford University Press 2009; US$ 17.99

    From the swirl of a wisp of smoke to eddies in rivers, and the huge persistent storm system that is the Great Spot on Jupiter, we see similar forms and patterns wherever there is flow - whether the movement of wind, water, sand, or flocks of birds. It is the complex dynamics of flow that structures our atmosphere, land, and oceans.Part of a trilogy... more...

  • The Music Instinctby Philip Ball

    Oxford University Press, USA 2010; US$ 20.99

    From Bach fugues to Indonesian gamelan, from nursery rhymes to rock, music has cast its light onto every corner of human culture. But why music excites such deep passions, and how we make sense of musical sound at all have, until recently, remained mysterious. Now in The Music Instinct, award-winning writer Philip Ball provides the first comprehensive,... more...

  • Unnaturalby Philip Ball

    Random House 2011; US$ 14.76

    Can we make a human being? The question has been asked for many centuries, and has produced recipes ranging from the clay golem of Jewish legend to the mass-produced test-tube babies in Brave New World . Unnatural delves beneath the surface of the cultural history of 'anthropoeia' - the artificial creation of people - to explore... more...

  • Bright Earthby Philip Ball

    Random House 2012; US$ 22.14

    Colour in art - as in life - is both inspiring and uplifting, but where does it come from? How have artists found new hues, and how have these influenced their work? Beginning with the ancients - when just a handful of pigments made up the artist's palette - and charting the discoveries and developments that have led to the many splendoured rainbow... more...

  • Universe of Stoneby Philip Ball

    Random House 2011; US$ 14.74

    In the twelfth century, Christians in Europe began to build a completely new kind of church - soaring, spacious monuments flooded with light from immense windows. These were the first Gothic churches, the crowning example of which was the cathedral of Chartres: a revolution in thought embodied in stone and glass, and a bridge between the ancient... more...

  • The Devil's Doctorby Philip Ball

    Farrar, Straus and Giroux 2006; US$ 8.99

    Philippus Aureolus Theophrastus Bombast von Hohenheim, who called himself Paracelsus, stands at the cusp of medieval and modern times. A contemporary of Luther, an enemy of the medical establishment, a scourge of the universities, an alchemist, an army surgeon, and a radical theologian, he attracted myths even before he died. His fantastic journeys... more...