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One of the most influential physicists of our time, Stephen Hawking touched the lives of millions. Recalling his nearly two decades as Hawking's collaborator and friends, Leonard Mlodinow brings this complex man into focus in a unique and deeply personal portrayal. We meet Hawking the genius, who ours his mind into uncovering the mysteries of the universe--ultimately formulating a pathbreaking theory of black holes that reignites the discipline of cosmology and paves the way for physicists to investigate the origins of the universe in completely new ways. We meet Hawking the colleagues, a man whose illness leaves him able to communicate at only six words per minute but who expends the effort to punctuate his conversations with humor. And we meet Hawking the friend, who can convey volumes with a frown, a smile, or simply a raised eyebrow.
Mlodinow puts us in the room as Hawking indulges his passion for wine and curry; shares his feelings on love, death, and disability; and grapples with deep questions of philosophy and physics. Whether depicting Hawking's devotion to his work or demonstrating how he would make spur of the moment choices, such as punting on the River Cam (despite the risk the jaunt to posed), or spinning tales of Hawking defiantly urinating in the hedges outside a restaurant that doesn't have a wheelchair accessible toilet, Mlodinow captures his indomitable spirit. This deeply affecting account of a friendship teaches us not just about the nature and practice of physics but also about life and the human capacity to overcome daunting obstacles. (Pantheon Books)
Leonard Mlodinow is a theoretical physicist and author, recognized for groundbreaking discoveries in physics, and as the author of five best-selling books. His book The Grand Design, co-authored with Stephen Hawking, reached #1 on the New York Times best-seller list; his book Subliminal: How Your Unconscious Mind Rules Your Behavior, won the 2013 PEN/E.O. Wilson award for literary science writing; and his book The Drunkard's Walk: How Randomness Rules Our Lives was chosen as a New York Times notable book, and short-listed for the Royal Society book award. Dr. Mlodinow is also known through his many public lectures and media appearances on programs such ranging from Morning Joe, to Through the Wormhole, and for debating Deepak Chopra on ABC's Nightline.
Dr. Michael Shermer is the Founding Publisher of Skeptic magazine, the host of the Science Salon Podcast, and a Presidential Fellow at Chapman University where he teaches Skepticism 101. For 18 years he was a monthly columnist for Scientific American. He is the author of New York Times bestsellers Why People Believe Weird Things and The Believing Brain, Why Darwin Matters, The Science of Good and Evil, The Moral Arc, and Heavens on Earth. His new book is Giving the Devil His Due: Reflections of a Scientific Humanist.