Title: The Sun’s Heartbeat: And Other Stories from the Life of the Star That Powers Our Planet
Author: Bob Berman
Release Date: July 13, 2011
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Genre: Non-Fiction, Science/Space
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
In this biography of the center of our solar system, the sun, Bob Berman takes the reader through the life cycle of our beloved star, relating tidbits and fascinating details along the way.
The Sun’s Heartbeat is a fascinating look at an everyday object we think we know so well – the sun. Every day, people see the star that powers our world and gives life to it up in the sky and then go about their day without a second thought about it. But that wasn’t always the case. Berman details the cultures and religions that once worshipped the sun, recognizing how amazing the orb in our sky really is.
Berman takes the reader “under the surface” of the sun. He explains sunspots and solar wind, and how these phenomena affect us here on earth. Every facet of the sun’s existence, from the science of nuclear fusion to the beliefs of early astronomers to solar eclipses, are discussed within this book. It’s an incredibly comprehensive book about the star, while also being very accessible. This isn’t a book written for a scientist, full of foreign jargon and difficult math principles. It’s aimed at the layperson, so that they can learn more about the sun.
The best part of The Sun’s Heartbeat is how incredibly engaging it is. This book is jam packed with details and tidbits to keep readers intrigued. I was learning something new and fascinating with every single page turn (a link between sun exposure and autism? WHA??) and it made me want to read this book in one sitting, from cover to cover. This is one of those books that keeps reminding you why it’s so engrossing with every turn of the page.
I thoroughly enjoyed The Sun’s Heartbeat, though I feel like I’m not doing it justice with this review. It was so enjoyable, I just wanted to immerse myself in it and absorb every little detail that Berman related. I can’t say enough great things about how Berman balanced the need to relate information with an engaging overarching narrative – the details never overwhelm, but instead entice and fit along well with the story Berman is telling. This is a great pick for those interested in the cosmos or just looking for a new twist on the classic biography genre.