Space is quiet. Billion trillions of stars slowly burning out their lives. Bodies of rock, moons, planets, floating in the dark. Most of the time. Sometimes violence is unleashed on the cosmos, the ripple effects so far-reaching that they stretch the limits of human comprehension. Sometimes, something explodes.
From the destruction of galaxies to supernovas, hypernovas and gamma ray bursts, these moments are rare yet powerful, often out of sight but consequentially felt. In Boom!, astronomy writer Bob Berman guides us through an epic investigation, unveiling dazzling 'new stars' suddenly created, the moon's violent birth and the effects of the cosmic rays that rain down on us.
Returning to the ground, he draws links between cataclysms in space and those on Earth – the Black Death's march across continents, the horror of World War II and the devastation of Chernobyl. Just as he explores how our world might end, Berman shows that though we have harnessed these apocalyptic energies for ill, we can, in the nearer future, appropriate them for good.
About the Author
Bob Berman is a leading astronomy writer and the author of Zapped, Zoom and The Sun's Heartbeat. He contributed the popular `Night Watchman' column for Discover for seventeen years and is currently a columnist for Astronomy, a host on Northeast Public Radio and science editor of The Old Farmer's Almanac. He lives in Willow, New York.
`Fascinating, terrifying and entertaining in equal measure, this is an expert guide to the deadliest hazards in the universe, on Earth and beyond.'
Paul Parsons, science journalist and author