The Magic of Reality

  • by Richard Dawkins, Lalla Ward
  • Narrated by Richard Dawkins, Lalla Ward
  • 6 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary



What are things made of?
What is the sun?
Why is there night and day, winter and summer?
Why do bad things happen?
Are we alone?

Throughout history people all over the world have invented stories to answer profound questions such as these. Have you heard the tale of how the sun hatched out of an emu's egg? Or what about the great catfish that carries the world on its back? Has anyone ever told you that earthquakes are caused by a sneezing giant? These fantastical myths are fun – but what is the real answer to such questions?
The Magic of Reality, with its explanations of space, time, evolution and more, will inspire and amaze listeners of all ages - young adults, adults, children, octogenarians. This book presents the real story of the world around us, taking us on an enthralling journey through scientific reality, and showing that it has an awe-inspiring beauty and thrilling magic which far exceed those of the ancient myths.
We encounter rainbows, earthquakes, tsunamis, shooting stars, plants, animals, and an intriguing cast of characters in this extraordinary scientific voyage of discovery. Richard Dawkins has created a dazzling celebration of our planet that will entertain and inform for years to come.
Read by Richard Dawkins and Lalla Ward. Also available in hardback, fully illustrated by Dave McKean.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Brilliant Book

A real book on time and space and reality and so easy to understand.

I love it. Well recemended.
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- guilio

A great book for beginners to science

I purchased this audiobook after listening to the absolutely fantastic Dawkins book, The Selfish Gene. I would suggest that if you have read or listened to that book and had no trouble in understanding it's content then The Magic of Reality might be a little unstimulating.

The book is well written, but really serves to give a general explanation of fundamental ideas in science. The topics are generally discussed at quite a superficial level, but you usually come away from a chapter with a decent overview of the topic.

I'm sure that there will be something new in this book for most people, although far less for anyone who has shown an interest in science since leaving school. Each chapter begins with a scientific theory's mythical counterpart, detailing the different stories and myths which exist about, for example, rainbows or earthquakes. This at least was something new to me, and was a nice way to structure the book. At times it almost felt like a far less aggressive assault on people's beliefs than in his other book, The God Delusion, although it felt less like a deliberate attack and more a narrative tool.

In summary I think this would be a great book for the fledgling scientist to read, and also suitable for the critically minded among you, but I would suggest looking for something more in depth if you already have a comfortable understanding of the core sciences.
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- Mr Kipling

Book Details

  • Release Date: 16-09-2011
  • Publisher: Random House AudioBooks