Brain Pickings

A Short Illustrated History of Nearly Everything


What charcoal has to do with democracy, equality and the cultural necessity for absurdity.

A couple of weeks ago, after raving about one of our all-time favorite books, Bill Bryson’s A Short History of Nearly Everything, reader Ian Shepherd alerted us to the recent publication of an illustrated version of the book. Needless to say, A Short History of Nearly Everything: Special Illustrated Edition is just as fantastic as you’d expect.

Today, courtesy of Ian’s photographic skills, we take a peek inside as we await our copy in the mail:

For the uninitiated, the book is a captivating exploration of how life evolved and how we humans came to make sense of it all. In 600 pages, Bryson offers a manifesto for scientific thought, written in a way that non-scientists can not merely understand but be swept away by, absorbing the author’s keen insight and chuckling at his well-timed wryness.

“This is a book about how it happened. In particular how we went from there being nothing at all to there being something, and then how a little of that something turned into us, and also what happened in between and since.” ~ Bill Bryson

A Short History of Nearly Everything: Special Illustrated Edition is currently 34% off on Amazon but wherever you choose to grab it, the important thing is that you do — it’s eye and brain candy of the best kind.

Images by Ian Shepherd

Donating = Loving

Bringing you (ad-free) Brain Pickings takes hundreds of hours each month. If you find any joy and stimulation here, please consider becoming a Supporting Member with a recurring monthly donation of your choosing, between a cup of tea and a good dinner.

You can also become a one-time patron with a single donation in any amount.

Brain Pickings has a free weekly newsletter. It comes out on Sundays and offers the week’s best articles. Here’s what to expect. Like? Sign up.

Share on Tumblr