Block of Books
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  • BEING MORTAL : ILLNESS MEDICINE AND WHAT MATTERS IN THE END
    BEING MORTAL : ILLNESS MEDICINE AND WHAT MATTERS IN THE END
    GAWANDE ATUL
    ISBN: 9781846685828
    Title: BEING MORTAL : ILLNESS MEDICINE AND WHAT MATTERS IN THE END
    Author: GAWANDE ATUL
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    From the international bestselling author of Better, Complications and The Checklist Manifesto and Reith Lecturer 2014, a revolutionary and emotionally searing account of death, dying and medicine.

    For most of human history, death was a common, ever-present possibility. It didn't matter whether you were five or fifty - every day was a roll of the dice. But now, as medical advances push the boundaries of survival further each year, we have become increasingly detached from the reality of being mortal. So here is a book about the modern experience of mortality - about what it's like to get old and die, how medicine has changed this and how it hasn't, where our ideas about death have gone wrong. With his trademark mix of perceptiveness and sensitivity, Atul Gawande outlines a story that crosses the globe, as he examines his experiences as a surgeon and those of his patients and family, and learns to accept the limits of what he can do.

    Never before has aging been such an important topic. The systems that we have put in place to manage our mortality are manifestly failing; but, as Gawande reveals, it doesn't have to be this way. The ultimate goal, after all, is not a good death, but a good life - all the way to the very end.

    Published in partnership with the Wellcome Collection, a free visitor destination that explores the connections between medicine, life and art.

    Imprint: PROFILE BOOKS
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • BEST AUSTRALIAN SCIENCE WRITING 2016
    BEST AUSTRALIAN SCIENCE WRITING 2016
    CHANDLER JO [ED]
    ISBN: 9781742235035
    Title: BEST AUSTRALIAN SCIENCE WRITING 2016
    Author: CHANDLER JO [ED]
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    From the furthest reaches of the universe to the microscopic world of our genes, science offers writers the kind of scope other subjects simply can't match. Good writing about science can be moving, funny, exhilarating or poetic, but it will always be honest and rigorous about the research that underlies it.

    Now in its sixth year, The Best Australian Science Writing 2016 brings together knowledge and insights from Australia’s brightest thinkers as they explore the intricacies of the world around us. This lively collection of essays covers a wide range of subjects and challenges our perceptions of the world and how we exist within it.

    Imprint: NEW SOUTH
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • BEST AUSTRALIAN SCIENCE WRITING 2017
    BEST AUSTRALIAN SCIENCE WRITING 2017
    SLEZAK MICHAEL [ED]
    ISBN: 9781742235554
    Title: BEST AUSTRALIAN SCIENCE WRITING 2017
    Author: SLEZAK MICHAEL [ED]
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    The annual collection celebrating the finest voices in Australian science writing.

    From the furthest reaches of the universe to the microscopic world of our genes, science offers writers the kind of scope other subjects simply can't match. Good writing about science can be moving, funny, exhilarating, or poetic, but it will always be honest and rigorous about the research that underlies it. Now in its seventh year, The Best Australian Science Writing brings together knowledge and insight from Australia’s brightest thinkers as they explore the intricacies of the world around us. This lively collection of essays covers a wide range of subjects, and challenges our perceptions of the world and how we exist within it.

    Imprint: NEW SOUTH
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • BETTER : A SURGEONS NOTES ON PERFORMANCE
    BETTER : A SURGEONS NOTES ON PERFORMANCE
    GAWANDE ATUL
    ISBN: 9781861976574
    Title: BETTER : A SURGEONS NOTES ON PERFORMANCE
    Author: GAWANDE ATUL
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    The struggle to perform well is universal, but nowhere is this drive to do better more important that in medicine.

    In his book, Atul Gawande explores grippingly how doctors strive to close the gap between best intentions and best performance in the face of obstacles that sometimes seem insurmountable.

    His vivid stories take us to battlefield surgical tents in Iraq, to a polio outbreak in India, and to malpractice courtrooms around the country. He discusses the ethical dilemmas of doctors' participation in lethal injections, examines the influence of money on modern medicine, and recounts the astoundingly contentious history of hand-washing. And he gives a brutally honest insight into life as a practising surgeon.

    Unflinching but compassionate, Gawande's investigation into medical professionals and their progression from good to great provides a detailed blueprint for success that can be used by people in every area of human endeavour.

    Imprint: PROFILE BOOKS
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • BEYOND INFINITY : An Expedition to the Outer-Limits of Mathematics
    BEYOND INFINITY : An Expedition to the Outer-Limits of Mathematics
    CHENG EUGENIA
    ISBN: 9781781252857
    Title: BEYOND INFINITY : An Expedition to the Outer-Limits of Mathematics
    Author: CHENG EUGENIA
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: APRIL 2017 NEW RELEASE

    Inside the weird and wonderful world of infinity, from endless hotels to bottomless cookie-jars.

    Even small children know there are infinitely many whole numbers - start counting and you'll never reach the end. But there are also infinitely many decimal numbers between zero and one. Are these two types of infinity the same? Are they larger or smaller than each other? Can we even talk about 'larger' and 'smaller' when we talk about infinity? In Beyond Infinity, international maths sensation Eugenia Cheng reveals the inner workings of infinity.

    What happens when a new guest arrives at your infinite hotel - but you already have an infinite number of guests? How does infinity give Zeno's tortoise the edge in a paradoxical foot-race with Achilles? And can we really make an infinite number of cookies from a finite amount of cookie dough?

    Wielding an armoury of inventive, intuitive metaphor, Cheng draws beginners and enthusiasts alike into the heart of this mysterious, powerful concept to reveal fundamental truths about mathematics, all the way from the infinitely large down to the infinitely small.

    Imprint: PROFILE BOOKS
    RRP: $32.99

    Price: $32.99
  • BEYOND WEIRD
    BEYOND WEIRD
    BALL PHILIP
    ISBN: 9781847924582
    Title: BEYOND WEIRD
    Author: BALL PHILIP
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    ‘I think I can safely say that nobody understands quantum mechanics.’

    Richard Feynman wrote this in 1965 – the year he was awarded the Nobel prize in physics for his work on quantum mechanics.

    Quantum physics is regarded as one of the most obscure and impenetrable subjects in all of science. But when Feynman said he didn’t understand quantum mechanics, he didn’t mean that he couldn’t do it – he meant that’s all he could do. He didn’t understand what the maths was saying: what quantum mechanics tells us about reality.

    Over the past decade or so, the enigma of quantum mechanics has come into sharper focus. We now realise that quantum mechanics is less about particles and waves, uncertainty and fuzziness, than a theory about information: about what can be known and how.

    This is more disturbing than our bad habit of describing the quantum world as ‘things behaving weirdly’ suggests. It calls into question the meanings and limits of space and time, cause and effect, and knowledge itself.

    The quantum world isn’t a different world: it is our world, and if anything deserves to be called ‘weird’, it’s us. This exhilarating book is about what quantum maths really means – and what it doesn’t mean.

    Imprint: BODLEY HEAD
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • BIG BANG : THE MOST IMPORTANT SCIENTIFIC DISCOVERY OF ALL TIME AND WHY YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT IT
    BIG BANG : THE MOST IMPORTANT SCIENTIFIC DISCOVERY OF ALL TIME AND WHY YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT IT
    SINGH SIMON
    ISBN: 9780007152520
    Title: BIG BANG : THE MOST IMPORTANT SCIENTIFIC DISCOVERY OF ALL TIME AND WHY YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT IT
    Author: SINGH SIMON
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    The bestselling author of Fermat's Last Theorem and The Code Book tells the story of the brilliant minds that deciphered the mysteries of the Big Bang.

    A fascinating exploration of the ultimate question: how was our universe created?

    Albert Einstein once said: 'The most incomprehensible thing about the universe is that it is comprehensible.' Simon Singh believes geniuses like Einstein are not the only people able to grasp the physics that govern the universe.

    We all can.

    As well as explaining what the Big Bang theory actually is and why cosmologists believe it is an accurate description of the origins of the universe, this book is also the fascinating story of the scientists who fought against the established idea of an eternal and unchanging universe. Simon Singh, renowned for making difficult ideas much less daunting than they first seem, is the perfect guide for this journey. Everybody has heard of the Big Bang theory. But how many of us can actually claim to understand it?

    With characteristic clarity and a narrative peppered with anecdotes and personal histories of those who have struggled to understand creation, Simon Singh has written the story of the most important theory ever.


    Imprint: PERENNIAL
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • BIG DATA
    BIG DATA
    CLEGG BRIAN
    ISBN: 9781785782343
    Title: BIG DATA
    Author: CLEGG BRIAN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Is the Brexit vote successful big data politics or the end of democracy? Why do airlines overbook, and why do banks get it wrong so often? How does big data enable Netflix to forecast a hit, CERN to find the Higgs boson and medics to discover if red wine really is good for you? And how are companies using big data to benefit from smart meters, use advertising that spies on you and develop the gig economy, where workers are managed by the whim of an algorithm?

    The volumes of data we now access can give unparalleled abilities to make predictions, respond to customer demand and solve problems. But Big Brother's shadow hovers over it. Though big data can set us free and enhance our lives, it has the potential to create an underclass and a totalitarian state.

    With big data ever-present, you can't afford to ignore it. Acclaimed science writer Brian Clegg - a habitual early adopter of new technology (and the owner of the second-ever copy of Windows in the UK) - brings big data to life.

    Imprint: ICON
    RRP: $19.99

    Price: $19.99
  • BIG FAT LIES : HOW THE DIET INDUSTRY IS MAKING YOU SICK FAT AND POOR
    BIG FAT LIES : HOW THE DIET INDUSTRY IS MAKING YOU SICK FAT AND POOR
    GILLESPIE DAVID
    ISBN: 9780143573708
    Title: BIG FAT LIES : HOW THE DIET INDUSTRY IS MAKING YOU SICK FAT AND POOR
    Author: GILLESPIE DAVID
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    'Diets and exercise won't help us lose weight. Vitamins and minerals are a waste of money and sometimes downright dangerous. Sugar makes us fat and sick. And polyunsaturated fat gives us cancer and works with sugar to give us heart disease. This book exists because I desperately hope that with a little knowledge we can all vote with out feet and change the rules of the game before the game kills us.'

    For decades we've been told to eat less, exercise more, eat less saturated fat, eat more polyunsaturated oils, and take vitamin and omega-3 fatty acid supplements. For decades this is what we've done, but the rates of obesity, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, dementia and cancer have never been higher.

    The real culprits, David Gillespie tells us, are sugar and polyunsaturated oils. Analysing the latest scientific evidence, he shows us why the outlines a plan to avoid them both without missing out or 'dieting'. Gillespie exposes the powerful role the multibillion-dollar food, health and diet industries have played in promoting the health messages we follow - or feel guilty about not following.

    Discovering the truth about diets, exercise, supplements and processed food is your first step towards improved health, greater happiness and a longer life for you and your family.

    'Gillespie is an informed and entertaining writer who makes his subject fascinating, and inspires with his passion and logic.'
    G MAGAZINE



    Imprint: PENGUIN BOOKS
    RRP: $24.99
    Price: $24.99
  • BIG PICTURE : ON THE ORIGINS OF LIFE MEANING AND THE UNIVERSE ITSELF
    BIG PICTURE : ON THE ORIGINS OF LIFE MEANING AND THE UNIVERSE ITSELF
    CARROLL SEAN
    ISBN: 9781780746067
    Title: BIG PICTURE : ON THE ORIGINS OF LIFE MEANING AND THE UNIVERSE ITSELF
    Author: CARROLL SEAN
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Already internationally acclaimed for his elegant, lucid writing on the most challenging notions in modern physics, Sean Carroll is emerging as one of the greatest humanist thinkers of his generation as he brings his extraordinary intellect to bear not only on Higgs bosons and extra dimensions but now also on our deepest personal questions. Where are we? Who are we? Are our emotions, our beliefs, and our hopes and dreams ultimately meaningless out there in the void?Does human purpose and meaning fit into a scientific worldview?
    In short chapters filled with intriguing historical anecdotes, personal asides, and rigorous exposition, readers learn the difference between how the world works at the quantum level, the cosmic level, and the human level--and then how each connects to the other. Carroll's presentation of the principles that have guided the scientific revolution from Darwin and Einstein to the origins of life, consciousness, and the universe is dazzlingly unique.
    Carroll shows how an avalanche of discoveries in the past few hundred years has changed our world and what really matters to us. Our lives are dwarfed like never before by the immensity of space and time, but they are redeemed by our capacity to comprehend it and give it meaning.
    "The Big Picture "is an unprecedented scientific worldview, a tour de force that will sit on shelves alongside the works of Stephen Hawking, Carl Sagan, Daniel Dennett, and E. O. Wilson for years to come."


    Imprint: ONE WORLD
    RRP: $39.99

    Price: $39.99
  • BIOLOGY OF DESIRE : WHY ADDICTION IS NOT A DISEASE
    BIOLOGY OF DESIRE : WHY ADDICTION IS NOT A DISEASE
    LEWIS MARC
    ISBN: 9781925106640
    Title: BIOLOGY OF DESIRE : WHY ADDICTION IS NOT A DISEASE
    Author: LEWIS MARC
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Through the vivid, true stories of five people who journeyed into and out of addiction, a renowned neuroscientist explains why the 'disease model' of addiction is wrong, and illuminates the path to recovery.The psychiatric establishment and rehab industry in the Western world have branded addiction a brain disease, based on evidence that brains change with drug use. But in The Biology of Desire, cognitive neuroscientist and former addict Marc Lewis makes a convincing case that addiction is not a disease, and shows why the disease model has become an obstacle to healing.Lewis reveals addiction as an unintended consequence of the brain doing what it's supposed to do - seek pleasure and relief - in a world that's not cooperating. Brains are designed to restructure themselves with normal learning and development, but this process is accelerated in addiction when highly attractive rewards are pursued repeatedly. Lewis shows why treatment based on the disease model so often fails, and how treatment can be retooled to achieve lasting recovery, given the realities of brain plasticity. Combining intimate human stories with clearly rendered scientific explanation, The Biology of Desire is enlightening and optimistic reading for anyone who has wrestled with addiction either personally or professionally.

    Imprint: SCRIBE
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • BIRD SENSE : WHAT ITS LIKE TO BE A BIRD
    BIRD SENSE : WHAT ITS LIKE TO BE A BIRD
    BIRKHEAD TIM
    ISBN: 9781408830543
    Title: BIRD SENSE : WHAT ITS LIKE TO BE A BIRD
    Author: BIRKHEAD TIM
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    What is it like to be a swift, flying at over one hundred kilometres an hour? Or a kiwi, plodding flightlessly among the humid undergrowth in the pitch dark of a New Zealand night? And what is going on inside the head of a nightingale as it sings, and how does its brain improvise?

    Bird Sense addresses questions like these and many more, by describing the senses of birds that enable them to interpret their environment and to interact with each other. Our affinity for birds is often said to be the result of shared senses - vision and hearing - but how exactly do their senses compare with our own? And what about a birds' sense of taste, or smell, or touch or the ability to detect the earth's magnetic field? Or the extraordinary ability of desert birds to detect rain hundreds of kilometres away - how do they do it?Bird Sense is based on a conviction that we have consistently underestimated what goes on in a bird's head. Our understanding of bird behaviour is simultaneously informed and constrained by the way we watch and study them. By drawing attention to the way these frameworks both facilitate and inhibit discovery, it identifies ways we can escape from them to seek new horizons in bird behaviour.
    There has never been a popular book about the senses of birds. No one has previously looked at how birds interpret the world or the way the behaviour of birds is shaped by their senses. A lifetime spent studying birds has provided Tim Birkhead with a wealth of observation and an understanding of birds and their behaviour that is firmly grounded in science.

    Imprint: BLOOMSBURY
    RRP: $19.99

    Price: $19.99
  • BIRDOLOGY
    BIRDOLOGY
    MONTGOMERY SY
    ISBN: 9781416569855
    Title: BIRDOLOGY
    Author: MONTGOMERY SY
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Meet the ladies: a flock of smart, affectionate, highly individualistic chickens who visit their favorite neighbors, devise different ways to hide from foxes, and mob the author like she's a rock star. In these pages you'll also meet Maya and Zuni, two orphaned baby hummingbirds who hatched from eggs the size of navy beans, and who are little more than air bubbles fringed with feathers. Their lives hang precariously in the balance-but with human help, they may one day conquer the sky.
    Snowball is a cockatoo whose dance video went viral on YouTube and who's now teaching schoolchildren how to dance. You'll meet Harris's hawks named Fire and Smoke. And you'll come to know and love a host of other avian characters who will change your mind forever about who birds really are.
    Each of these birds shows a different and utterly surprising aspect of what makes a bird a bird-and these are the lessons of Birdology: that birds are far stranger, more wondrous, and at the same time more like us than we might have dared to imagine. In Birdology, beloved author of The Good Good Pig Sy Montgomery explores the essence of the otherworldly creatures we see every day. By way of her adventures with seven birds-wild, tame, exotic, and common-she weaves new scientific insights and narrative to reveal seven kernels of bird wisdom.
    The first lesson of Birdology is that, no matter how common they are, Birds Are Individuals, as each of Montgomery's distinctive Ladies clearly shows. In the leech-infested rain forest of Queensland, you'll come face to face with a cassowary-a 150-pound, man-tall, flightless bird with a helmet of bone on its head and a slashing razor-like toenail with which it (occasionally) eviscerates people-proof that Birds Are Dinosaurs. You'll learn from hawks that Birds Are Fierce; from pigeons, how Birds Find Their Way Home; from parrots, what it means that Birds Can Talk; and from 50,000 crows who moved into a small city's downtown, that Birds Are Everywhere. They are the winged aliens who surround us.
    Birdology explains just how very "other" birds are: Their hearts look like those of crocodiles. They are covered with modified scales, which are called feathers. Their bones are hollow. Their bodies are permeated with extensive air sacs. They have no hands. They give birth to eggs. Yet despite birds' and humans' disparate evolutionary paths, we share emotional and intellectual abilities that allow us to communicate and even form deep bonds. When we begin to comprehend who birds really are, we deepen our capacity to approach, understand, and love these otherworldly creatures. And this, ultimately, is the priceless lesson of Birdology: it communicates a heartfelt fascination and awe for birds and restores our connection to these complex, mysterious fellow creatures.

    Imprint: FREE PRESS - SIMON AND SC
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • BIRDS AT MY TABLE : Why we feed wild birds and why it matters
    BIRDS AT MY TABLE : Why we feed wild birds and why it matters
    JONES DARRYL
    ISBN: 9781742235974
    Title: BIRDS AT MY TABLE : Why we feed wild birds and why it matters
    Author: JONES DARRYL
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    A wild flight through the history of bird feeding, pondering this odd but seriously popular form of interaction between humans and wild animals.

    Darryl Jones is fascinated by bird feeders. Not the containers supplying food to our winged friends, but the people who fill the containers, scatter the crumbs or seeds, or leave the picnic scraps behind for the birds.

    Here, Jones takes us on a wild flight through the history of bird feeding as he ponders this odd but seriously popular form of interaction between humans and wild animals. Jones digs at the deeper issues and questions of the practice of bird feeding, as he raises our awareness of the things we don't yet know and why we really should.

    This beautifully written and engaging books reveals that what at first seems to be a niche topic — humans feeding wild birds — is in fact something a disproportionate number of us do. Half the citizens of Australia, the UK, and the US feed birds, whether its by planting trees that attract them, putting food out on apartment balconies, setting up birds baths and feeders, or by unwittingly leaving scraps behind in parks. The international bird seed industry is huge and most of the seed is gown in India or Africa. Another way of describing all this activity is as an unplanned ecological experiment on an unbelievably large scale.

    In The Birds at My Table, Jones draws on an impressive knowledge of the latest scientific findings as well as his own personal knowledge, to reflect and explain the modern practice of bird feeding.

    Imprint: NEW SOCIETY PUB
    RRP: $27.99

    Price: $27.99
  • BIRDS IN THEIR HABITATS : Journeys with a Naturalist
    BIRDS IN THEIR HABITATS : Journeys with a Naturalist
    FRASER IAN
    ISBN: 9781486307449
    Title: BIRDS IN THEIR HABITATS : Journeys with a Naturalist
    Author: FRASER IAN
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Discover birds and the places they live.

    Everywhere we go there are birds, and they all have mysteries to be unravelled. These mysteries include the way they look, from bizarre to apparently mundane, why they live where they live, and the things they do, many of which are far too incredible ever to be imagined as fiction.

    Birds in Their Habitats is a collection of stories and experiences, which introduce fascinating aspects of birdlife, ecology and behaviour. Informed by a wealth of historical and contemporary research, Ian Fraser takes the reader on a journey through four continents: from places as unfamiliar as the Chonos Archipelago of southern Chile and the arid Sahel woodlands of northern Cameroon to those as familiar as a suburban backyard. This is a book of discovery of birds and the places they live. And with humour and personal insight, it is a book about the sometimes strange world of the people who spend a life absorbed in birds.

    Imprint: CSIRO PUBLICATIONS
    RRP: $39.95

    Price: $39.95
  • BLACK HOLE BLUES AND OTHER SONGS FROM OUTER SPACE
    BLACK HOLE BLUES AND OTHER SONGS FROM OUTER SPACE
    LEVIN JANNA
    ISBN: 9780099569589
    Title: BLACK HOLE BLUES AND OTHER SONGS FROM OUTER SPACE
    Author: LEVIN JANNA
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: APRIL 2017 NEW RELEASE

    The full inside story of the detection of gravitational waves at LIGO, one of the most ambitious feats in scientific history.

    Travel around the world 100 billion times. A strong gravitational wave will briefly change that distance by less than the thickness of a human hair. We have perhaps less than a few tenths of a second to perform this measurement. And we don't know if this infinitesimal event will come next month, next year or perhaps in thirty years.

    In 1916 Einstein predicted the existence of gravitational waves: miniscule ripples in the very fabric of spacetime generated by unfathomably powerful events. If such vibrations could somehow be recorded, we could observe our universe for the first time through sound: the hissing of the Big Bang, the whale-like tunes of collapsing stars, the low tones of merging galaxies, the drumbeat of two black holes collapsing into one. For decades, astrophysicists have searched for a way of doing so…

    In 2016 a team of hundreds of scientists at work on a billion-dollar experiment made history when they announced the first ever detection of a gravitational wave, confirming Einstein's prediction. This is their story, and the story of the most sensitive scientific instrument ever made: LIGO.

    Based on complete access to LIGO and the scientists who created it, Black Hole Blues provides a firsthand account of this astonishing achievement: a compelling, intimate portrait of cutting-edge science at its most awe-inspiring and ambitious.

    Imprint: VINTAGE
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
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