Block of Books
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  • BAD SCIENCE
    BAD SCIENCE
    GOLDACRE BEN
    ISBN: 9780007284870
    Title: BAD SCIENCE
    Author: GOLDACRE BEN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    GUARDIAN columnist Dr Ben Goldacre takes us on a hilarious, invigorating and informative journey through the bad science we're fed by the worst of the hacks and the quacks.

    When Dr Ben Goldacre saw someone on daytime TV dipping her feet in an 'Aqua Detox' footbath, releasing her toxins into the water and turning it brown, he thought he'd try the same at home. 'Like some kind of Johnny Ball cum Witchfinder General', using his girlfriend's Barbie doll, he gently passed an electrical current through the warm salt water. It turned brown. In his words: 'before my very eyes, the world's first Detox Barbie was sat, with her feet in a pool of brown sludge, purged of a weekend's immorality.' Dr Ben Goldacre is the author of the BAD SCIENCE column in the GUARDIAN and his book is about all the 'bad science' we are constantly bombarded with in the media and in advertising. At a time when science is used to prove everything and nothing, everyone has their own 'bad science' moments - from the useless pie-chart on the back of cereal packets to the use of the word 'visibly' in cosmetics ads.

    This book will help people to quantify their instincts - that a lot of the so-called 'science' which appears in the media and in advertising is just wrong or misleading. Satirical and amusing - and unafraid to expose the ridiculous - it provides the reader with the facts they need to differentiate the good from the bad.

    Full of spleen, this is a hilarious, invigorating and informative journey through the world of BAD SCIENCE.

    Imprint: FOURTH ESTATE
    RRP: $19.99

    Price: $19.99
  • BASIS OF EVERYTHING : Rutherford Oliphant and the Making of the Atomic Bomb
    BASIS OF EVERYTHING : Rutherford Oliphant and the Making of the Atomic Bomb
    RAMSEY ANDREW
    ISBN: 9781460755235
    Title: BASIS OF EVERYTHING : Rutherford Oliphant and the Making of the Atomic Bomb
    Author: RAMSEY ANDREW
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    The story that bonds Ernest Rutherford and Marcus Oliphant is as extraordinary as it is unlikely. They were kindred souls, schooled and steeped in the furthest frontiers of Britain's empire, whose restless intellect and tireless conviction fused in the crucible of discovery at Cambridge University's celebrated Cavendish Laboratory, at a time when nature's deepest secrets were being revealed. Their brilliance illuminated the sub-atomic recesses of the natural world and, as a direct result, set loose the power of nuclear fusion.

    It was a heartfelt, enduring partnership, born at the University of Adelaide's modest physics department and flourishing further in the confines of the Cavendish before ultimately driving the famed Manhattan Project, which produced the world's first nuclear weapons, unleashed to such devastating effect on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

    Rutherford and Oliphant were men with a shared devotion to pure science, who, through circumstance and necessity, found themselves betrayed as instruments of the war they detested but were duty-bound to prosecute. Consequently, their influence was pivotal in the last great global conflict the world witnessed and in engendering the thermonuclear threat that has held the planet hostage ever since. Yet their pioneering work lives on too in a vast array of innovations seeded by nuclear physics, from radiocarbon dating and TV screens to life-saving diagnostic-imaging devices.

    Imprint: Harper Collins
    RRP: $39.99

    Price: $39.99
  • BEAUTIFUL QUESTION : FINDING NATURES DEEP DESIGN
    BEAUTIFUL QUESTION : FINDING NATURES DEEP DESIGN
    WILCZEK FRANK
    ISBN: 9780718199463
    Title: BEAUTIFUL QUESTION : FINDING NATURES DEEP DESIGN
    Author: WILCZEK FRANK
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    In this scientific tour de force, world-class physicist Frank Wilczek argues that beauty is at the heart of the logic of the universe. As the quest to find the beauty embodied in the universe has connected all scientific pursuit, from Pythagoras to Einstein, Wilczek shows us just how deeply intertwined our ideas about beauty and art are with our understanding of the cosmos.
    A Beautiful Question is a mind-expanding book combining the age-old human quest for beauty with the age-old human quest for truth.

    Imprint: PENGUIN BOOKS
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • BEE QUEST
    BEE QUEST
    GOULSON DAVE
    ISBN: 9781784704803
    Title: BEE QUEST
    Author: GOULSON DAVE
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    The much-loved, Sunday Times bestselling author continues in his quest to change the way we think about bees...

    A hunt for the world's most elusive bees leads Dave Goulson from Salisbury plain to Sussex hedgerows, from Poland to Patagonia. Whether he is tracking great yellow bumblebees in the Hebrides or chasing orchid bees through the Ecuadorian jungle, Dave Goulson’s wit, humour and deep love of nature make him the ideal travelling companion.

    But perhaps Bee Quest is most fascinating when Dave Goulson explores closer to home, amongst the secret places hidden right under our noses: the abandoned industrial estates where great crested newts roam; or the rewilded estate at Knepp Castle, where, with the aid of some hairy, bluebell-eating Tamworth pigs, nightingale song has been heard for the first time in generations.

    This utterly charming book will inspire you to think about the ways in which we are all responsible for the future of our world. Through his scientific expertise and passion for conservation, Goulson shows us nature’s resilience against the odds, and that beauty hides in the most surprising places.

    Imprint: VINTAGE
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • BEES OF AUSTRALIA : A Photographic Guide
    BEES OF AUSTRALIA : A Photographic Guide
    DOREY JAMES
    ISBN: 9781486308491
    Title: BEES OF AUSTRALIA : A Photographic Guide
    Author: DOREY JAMES
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    Bees are the darlings of the insect world. It is a great joy to see these tenacious insects hard at work, peacefully buzzing from flower to flower on warm and sunny days.

    Many people recognise the worth of bees, as well as that they face many threats. But very few know about the diversity and importance of our native bee species. There are an estimated 2000 to 3000 bee species in Australia, yet we know very little about the vast majority of these and there are many that are yet to be described. Bees of Australia introduces some of our incredible native bees, many of which, if you look closely, can be found in your own garden. Open this book wherever you like or read it from cover to cover. The combination of photography and contributions from many of Australia’s leading bee researchers allows anyone to become enthralled by our native bees. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself looking closer at every flower that you pass in search of our wonderful native bees.

    Imprint: CSIRO PUBLICATIONS
    RRP: $49.99

    Price: $49.99
  • BEHAVE : The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst
    BEHAVE : The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst
    SAPOLSKY ROBERT M
    ISBN: 9780099575061
    Title: BEHAVE : The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst
    Author: SAPOLSKY ROBERT M
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Why do human beings behave as they do?

    We are capable of savage acts of violence but also spectacular feats of kindness: is one side of our nature destined to win out over the other?

    Every act of human behaviour has multiple layers of causation, spiralling back seconds, minutes, hours, days, months, years, even centuries, right back to the dawn of time and the origins of our species.

    In the epic sweep of history, how does our biology affect the arc of war and peace, justice and persecution? How have our brains evolved alongside our cultures?

    This is the exhilarating story of human morality and the science underpinning the biggest question of all: what makes us human?

    Imprint: Vintage
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • 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
  • 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 WEIRD
    BEYOND WEIRD
    BALL PHILIP
    ISBN: 9781784706081
    Title: BEYOND WEIRD
    Author: BALL PHILIP
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: April 2019 New Release

    'A clear and deeply researched account of what?s known about the quantum laws of nature, and how to think about what they might really mean? Nature '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. Over the past decade, 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. 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. 'Gorgeously lucid...takes us to the edge of contemporary theorizing about the foundations of quantum mechanics... Easily the best book I?ve read on the subject? Washington Post

    Imprint: RANDOM HOUSE
    RRP: $22.99
    Price: $22.99
  • 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 NECESSITY : Adventures in Human Waste
    BIG NECESSITY : Adventures in Human Waste
    GEORGE ROSE
    ISBN: 9781846270703
    Title: BIG NECESSITY : Adventures in Human Waste
    Author: GEORGE ROSE
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    Rose George confronts the last taboo and takes us on an unprecedented tour through a world knee-deep in pestilential sewage - which remains the most significant global issue about which few talk or think.


    Prepare to embark upon an eye-opening tour through the world of human waste. With a journalist's nose for a story, and a campaigner's desire for change, Rose George is our undaunted guide through this fascinating and little travelled terrain. She takes us underground into the Victorian brick sewers of London and New York in the company of flushermen, and overground to meet the heroes of India's sanitation movement. We examine the hi-tech Japanese revolution in toilet engineering; we investigate whether re-naming sewage sludge 'biosolids' might provide an eco-friendly alternative to petrol; and we stand right in front of the single biggest unsolved public health problem on the planet.

    Witty, serious and original, The Big Necessity proves that shit doesn't have to be a dirty word.

    Imprint: PORTOBELLO
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • BILINGUAL BRAIN : And What it Tells Us about the Science of Language
    BILINGUAL BRAIN : And What it Tells Us about the Science of Language
    COSTA ALBERT
    ISBN: 9780241391518
    Title: BILINGUAL BRAIN : And What it Tells Us about the Science of Language
    Author: COSTA ALBERT
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: August 2018 New Release

    What exactly does it mean for two languages to coexist in the same brain? How do babies exposed to different languages differentiate between them? And how does cognitive decline affect the two languages?

    Bilingualism is quickly becoming the rule rather than the exception as more than half of the world's population is able to communicate in more than one language. In The Bilingual Brain, leading expert Albert Costa guides us through the latest research exploring the many fascinating questions raised by bilingualism- from how children exposed to two different languages determine between them to how it influences our decisions. Filled with memorable examples from cutting-edge studies, The Bilingual Brain shows that bilingualism can help us better understand how language works.

    Imprint: ALLEN LANE
    RRP: $45.00
    Price: $45.00
  • BIRD BONDS : Sex mate-choice and cognition in Australian birds
    BIRD BONDS : Sex mate-choice and cognition in Australian birds
    KAPLAN GISELA
    ISBN: 9781760554200
    Title: BIRD BONDS : Sex mate-choice and cognition in Australian birds
    Author: KAPLAN GISELA
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    An absorbing, compelling insight into the unique and extraordinary lives of Australian native birds by a leading expert in the field.

    Some Australian native birds become childhood sweethearts and court for years before they get 'married'. Others divorce because of personality clashes and different skill levels. Many negotiate their parenting duties. But how do these personal life events link to long-lasting bonds, long life-spans and exceptional overall intelligence? Professor Gisela Kaplan, an eminent voice in animal behaviour, and particularly bird behaviour, draws on the latest insights in the evolution of particular cognitive and social abilities. She uncovers motivations and attractions in partner choice that are far more complex than was once believed. She shows how humans and birds may be more alike in attachment and mating behaviour than we think - despite the enormous evolutionary distance between us. Based on a wealth of original research and complemented by illustrations and colour photographs, Bird Bonds is a valuable resource and a beguiling insight into the world of the birds around us.

    Imprint: MACMILLAN
    RRP: $34.99

    Price: $34.99
  • BIRD MIGRATION
    BIRD MIGRATION
    NEWTON IAN
    ISBN: 9780008398545
    Title: BIRD MIGRATION
    Author: NEWTON IAN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: NOT YET PUBLISHED NO DTE

    The phenomenon of bird migration has fascinated people from time immemorial. The arrivals and departures of different species marked the seasons, heralding spring and autumn, and providing a reliable calendar long before anything better became available.

    Migration is shown by many kinds of animals, including butterflies and other insects, mammals, marine turtles and fish, but in none is it as extensively developed as in birds. The collective travel routes of birds span almost the entire globe, with some extreme return journeys covering more than 30,000 km. As a result of migration, bird distributions are continually changing – in regular seasonal patterns, and on local, regional or global scales.

    Migration has repeatedly prompted familiar questions, such as where birds go or come from, why do they do it, how do they know when and where to travel, and how do they find their way? In this seminal new book, Ian Newton sets out to answer these – and other – questions.

    The book is divided into four main sections: the first is introductory, describing the different types of bird movements, methods of study, and the main migration patterns seen around the British Isles; the second part is concerned mainly with the process of migration – with timing, energy needs, weather effects and navigation; the third with evolution and change in migratory behaviour; and the fourth with the geographical and ecological aspects of bird movements.

    Imprint: William Collins
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • 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: TRADE 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: Newsouth Books
    RRP: $27.99

    Price: $27.99
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