A to Z Challenge: D is for Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs

So for the past few weeks I’ve been reading this book, Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs: The Astounding Interconnectedness of the Universe by Lisa Randall, and I’ve been very slow with it. It is turning out to be one of my favourite book that I’ve read this year.

But before I get on to talking about the book, allow me a small detour.

I’m a Physics major, and many people assume that by default I should love reading Science Books, and hate Science Fiction for its glaring inaccuracy. In fact, it is quite the opposite. I love Science Fiction to see what outsiders think of the sciences, and it is very interesting to see their imagination and their views on how we can use some of concepts we already know, however improbable they might be.

I shouldn’t say I don’t like Sciencey books; I usually don’t read those kinds of books because most of the Physicists that I’ve read do a very bad job of getting the point across. They somehow manage to start off on a good note, and then somewhere in the middle they lose themselves and me.

Now, though, it is easier for me to read and understand these books and I get why they’re so dense, but they could make an effort to make it a tad more interesting to the layperson.

Back to the point:

Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs: The Astounding Interconnectedness of the Universe by Lisa Randall is a beautifully written book. It does a brilliant job in explaining Dark Matter, Dark Energy; it’s place in the universe and manages to give a small lesson on Dinosaurs and sheds a bit more light on their extinction. She manages to explain all of this with little to no equations, or heavy science babble and in an engaging way; almost like a story that unfolds.

In fact, it is very much like a story that unfolds, because the whole book boils down to how Dark Matter may have caused the extinction of the dinosaurs. In the end, though, it is just speculation, a very credible hypothesis, but unfortunately without a great deal of evidence given that they are dealing with largely hypothetical substances (i.e. Dark Matter).

As I said, I had to read this book very slowly (I’m actually still reading it) because there are some amazing concepts that need to be studied, and looked at more carefully than just a reader’s casual glance. I do this because this is something that I’d love to work on in the future, and it is something I am genuinely interested in.





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