Vistas of Many Worlds: A Journey Through Space and Time, by Erik Anderson - Review
In his book, Erik Anderson gives a brief introduction to astronomy, planetary science and the history of the world. He portrays our solar system, the universe, creation and life cycles of stars very accurately. He also discusses the existence of other earth-like planets. As the title promises, the book describes a journey through space and time and Anderson manages to create an atmosphere filled with wisdom about the universe. While I wish he would have used real photographs instead of just graphics, the pictures of the night skies compliment this atmosphere.
Throughout his book, Anderson interlaces facts and knowledge about astronomy with planetary science and the history of the world. For example, he explains how dinosaurs became extinct and how the night sky looked for the early humans. To this end, his book doesn’t merely contain isolated facts. It connects knowledge.
Anderson’s introduction to astronomy is complete; it ranges from ancient astronomy to modern astronomy. The reader also learns historical information, such as when the first planets and sun-like stars were discovered. The sections about the likelihood of the existence of earthlike planets and the ongoing effort to discover such planets are also very interesting. Sometimes though, he jumps back and forth between topics. The topics could have been organized better.
Anderson shares a lot of knowledge about our planet and stars and connects knowledge between scientific disciplines quite well. Overall, it is a nice book suited for youth and adults with an interest in astronomy.
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