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217 Featured Titles

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Exam Copy
The Story of Science: Einstein Adds a New Dimension
Einstein Adds a New Dimension
Written by Joy Hakim


Format: Hardcover, 480 pages
Publisher: Smithsonian Books
On Sale: November 1, 2007
Price: $27.95
ISBN: 978-1-58834-162-4 (1-58834-162-3)

Joy Hakim’s The Story of Science: Einstein Adds a New Dimension brings us to the recent past and the groundbreaking discoveries made in it: the quantum world, the theory of relativity, and nuclear physics. These discoveries created our modern world, from solar-powered calculators to cell phones to global positioning systems and... Read more >

Exam Copy
The Story of Science: Newton at the Center
Newton at the Center
Written by Joy Hakim


Format: Hardcover, 480 pages
Publisher: Smithsonian Books
On Sale: November 1, 2005
Price: $27.95
ISBN: 978-1-58834-161-7 (1-58834-161-5)

In volume two, students will watch as Copernicus’s systematic observations place the sun at the center of our universe–to the dismay of establishment thinkers. After students follow the achievements and frustrations of Galileo, Kepler, and Descartes, they will appreciate the amazing Isaac Newton, whose discoveries about gravity, motion, colors, calculus, and... Read more >

Exam Copy
On the Frontier
Experimental Flight at NASA Dryden
Written by Richard P. Hallion and Michael H. Gorn


Format: Trade Paperback, 584 pages
Publisher: Smithsonian Books
On Sale: July 6, 2010
Price: $39.95
ISBN: 978-1-58834-289-8 (1-58834-289-1)

This little known classic history of flight-testing the Xplanes is reborn, sweepingly revised and updated with new and recently released information. Aviation enthusiasts will savor the most detailed account available of record-setting aircraft like the X-1 and XZ-15, flown by Chuck Yeager and other legends, as well as all the cutting-edge... Read more >

Exam Copy
Orchid Fever
A Horticultural Tale of Love, Lust, and Lunacy
Written by Eric Hansen


Format: Trade Paperback, 288 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: February 27, 2001
Price: $15.00
ISBN: 978-0-679-77183-8 (0-679-77183-2)

The acclaimed author of Motoring with Mohammed brings us a compelling adventure into the remarkable world of the orchid and the impossibly bizarre array of international characters who dedicate their lives to it.

The orchid is used for everything from medicine for elephants to an aphrodisiac ice cream. A Malaysian species can... Read more >

Exam Copy
Letter to a Christian Nation

Written by Sam Harris


Format: Trade Paperback, 144 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: January 8, 2008
Price: $13.95
ISBN: 978-0-307-27877-7 (0-307-27877-8)

“Thousands of people have written to tell me that I am wrong not to believe in God. The most hostile of these communications have come from Christians. This is ironic, as Christians generally imagine that no faith imparts the virtues of love and forgiveness more effectively than their own. The truth... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Think
Why You Should Question Everything
Written by Guy P. Harrison


Format: Trade Paperback, 300 pages
Publisher: Prometheus Books
On Sale: November 5, 2013
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-1-61614-807-2 (1-61614-807-1)

This accessible and introductory guide to critical thinking will help students think like a scientist, learn to question everything, and understand how our brains can trip us up. This fresh and witty approach to science, skepticism, and critical thinking challenges everyone to embrace the skeptical life, and improve their critical thinking... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
A Brief History of Time

Written by Stephen Hawking


Format: Trade Paperback, 224 pages
Publisher: Bantam
On Sale: September 1, 1998
Price: $18.00
ISBN: 978-0-553-38016-3 (0-553-38016-8)

Introduction by Carl Sagan. Hawking's classic A Brief History of Time expertly guides students to the supreme questions of the nature of physics, time and the universe: Was there a beginning of time? Will there be an end? Is the universe infinite? Is it possible to unite all branches of physics?... Read more >
Also available as an eBook and a hardcover.

Exam Copy
A Brief History of Time
And Other Essays
Written by Stephen Hawking


Format: Hardcover, 224 pages
Publisher: Bantam
On Sale: September 1, 1998
Price: $30.00
ISBN: 978-0-553-10953-5 (0-553-10953-7)

Introduction by Carl Sagan. Hawking's classic A Brief History of Time expertly guides students to the supreme questions of the nature of physics, time and the universe: Was there a beginning of time? Will there be an end? Is the universe infinite? Is it possible to unite all branches of physics?... Read more >
Also available as an eBook and a trade paperback.

Exam Copy
A Briefer History of Time

Written by Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow


Format: Hardcover, 176 pages
Publisher: Bantam
On Sale: September 27, 2005
Price: $27.00
ISBN: 978-0-553-80436-2 (0-553-80436-7)

Stephen Hawking’s worldwide bestseller, A Brief History of Time, has been a landmark volume in scientific writing. Its author’s engaging voice is one reason, and the compelling subjects he addresses is another: the nature of space and time, the role of God in creation, the history and future of the universe... Read more >
Also available as an unabridged audiobook download, eBook and a trade paperback.

Exam Copy
The Grand Design

Written by Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow


Format: Hardcover, 208 pages
Publisher: Bantam
On Sale: September 7, 2010
Price: $28.00
ISBN: 978-0-553-80537-6 (0-553-80537-1)

The first major work in nearly a decade by one of the world's great thinkers, The Grand Design is a marvelously concise book with new answers to the ultimate questions of life.

When and how did the universe begin? Why are we here? Why is there something rather than nothing? What is... Read more >

Exam Copy
The Universe in a Nutshell

Written by Stephen Hawking


Format: Hardcover, 224 pages
Publisher: Bantam
On Sale: November 6, 2001
Price: $35.00
ISBN: 978-0-553-80202-3 (0-553-80202-X)

Please Note: This book is not available at the special examination price.

Hawking returns with a lavishly illustrated sequel to his A Brief History of Time that unravels the mysteries of the major breakthroughs that have occurred in the years since the release of his acclaimed first book. The Universe in a... Read more >
Also available as an unabridged audio CD and an unabridged audiobook download.

Exam Copy
They Changed the World: Bell, Edison and Tesla

Written by Lewis Helfand
Illustrated by Naresh Kumar


Format: Trade Paperback, 96 pages
Publisher: Campfire
On Sale: June 17, 2014
Price: $12.99
ISBN: 978-93-80741-87-1 (93-80741-87-1)

Despite having three completely different approaches, Alexander Graham Bell, Thomas Edison and Nicola Tesla each made significant contributions to the field of science and laid the foundation for modern technology.  As their paths crossed, a rivalry grew, with Tesla pushed into the shadows of history until a resurgence in the 1990s. ... Read more >

Exam Copy
History of the Space Shuttle, Volume Two
Development of the Space Shuttle, 1972-1981
Written by T. A. Heppenheimer


Format: Trade Paperback, 504 pages
Publisher: Smithsonian Books
On Sale: July 6, 2010
Price: $32.95
ISBN: 978-1-58834-285-0 (1-58834-285-9)

Basing his work on virtually untapped NASA archives, T. A. Heppenheimer has produced the second volume of his definitive history of the space shuttle. Volume Two traces the development of the shuttle through a decade of engineering setbacks and breakthroughs, program-management challenges, and political strategizing, culminating in the first launch in... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Engines of Change
The American Industrial Revolution, 1790-1860
Written by Brooke Hindle and Stephen Lubar


Format: Trade Paperback, 310 pages
Publisher: Smithsonian Books
On Sale: October 17, 1986
Price: $21.95
ISBN: 978-0-87474-539-9 (0-87474-539-X)

Engines of Change is based on a Smithsonian Institution exhibit of the same title. The principal theme is the importance of technological transfer. It ventures beyond discussion of machines and tools to consider the effects of geographical dimension, natural resources, business practices, the role of women, ethnic diversity, and education. In... Read more >

Exam Copy
The Age of Wonder
The Romantic Generation and the Discovery of the Beauty and Terror of Science
Written by Richard Holmes


Format: Trade Paperback, 576 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: March 2, 2010
Price: $17.95
ISBN: 978-1-4000-3187-0 (1-4000-3187-7)

A riveting history of the men and women whose discoveries and inventions at the end of the eighteenth century gave birth to the Romantic Age of Science.

When young Joseph Banks stepped onto a Tahitian beach in 1769, he hoped to discover Paradise. Inspired by the scientific ferment sweeping through Britain... Read more >
Also available as an eBook and a hardcover.

Exam Copy
The Age of Wonder
How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science
Written by Richard Holmes


Format: Hardcover, 576 pages
Publisher: Pantheon
On Sale: July 14, 2009
Price: $40.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-42222-5 (0-375-42222-6)

Winner of the 2009 Royal Society Prize for Science Books

A riveting history of the men and women whose discoveries and inventions at the end of the eighteenth century gave birth to the Romantic Age of Science.

When young Joseph Banks stepped onto a Tahitian beach in 1769, he hoped to discover... Read more >
Also available as an eBook and a trade paperback.

Exam Copy
Falling Upwards
How We Took to the Air
Written by Richard Holmes


Format: Hardcover, 416 pages
Publisher: Pantheon
On Sale: October 29, 2013
Price: $35.00
ISBN: 978-0-307-37966-5 (0-307-37966-3)

Falling Upwards tells the story of the enigmatic group of men and women who first risked their lives to take to the air, and so discovered a new dimension of human experience. Why they did it, what their contemporaries thought of them, and how their flights revealed the secrets of our... Read more >
Also available as an eBook and a trade paperback.

Exam Copy
Totem Salmon
Life Lessons from Another Species
Written by Freeman House


Format: Trade Paperback, 248 pages
Publisher: Beacon Press
On Sale: May 12, 2000
Price: $21.00
ISBN: 978-0-8070-8549-3 (0-8070-8549-9)

Part lyrical natural history, part social and philosophical manifesto, Totem Salmon tells the story of a determined band of locals who’ve worked for over two decades to save one of the last purely native species of salmon in California. The book-call it the zen of salmon restoration-traces the evolution of the... Read more >

Exam Copy
Man's Place in Nature

Written by Thomas H. Huxley
Series edited by Stephen Jay Gould


Format: Trade Paperback, 192 pages
Publisher: Modern Library
On Sale: October 2, 2001
Price: $15.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-75847-8 (0-375-75847-X)

Thomas H. Huxley was one of the first supporters of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection, and he did more than any other writer to advance its acceptance among scientists and nonscientists alike. His most famous book, Man’s Place in Nature, published only five years after Darwin’s The Origin... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Temperament
How Music Became a Battleground for the Great Minds of Western Civilization
Written by Stuart Isacoff


Format: Trade Paperback, 288 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: February 4, 2003
Price: $16.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-70330-0 (0-375-70330-6)

Few music lovers realize that the arrangement of notes on today’s pianos was once regarded as a crime against God and nature, or that such legendary thinkers as Pythagoras, Plato, da Vinci, Galileo, Kepler, Descartes, Newton and Rousseau played a role in the controversy. Indeed, from the time of the Ancient... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Northern Lights

Written by Lucy Jago


Format: Trade Paperback, 320 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: October 29, 2002
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-0-375-70882-4 (0-375-70882-0)

Combining popular science, biography, and arctic adventure in a book that reads lika a cross between Longitude, A Beautiful Mind, and Into Thin Air, Lucy Jago presents a riveting acount of the life and work of Norwegian scientist Kristian Birkeland, the visioinary who solved the mysteries of the aurora borealis.

Here is... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Published Writings of Wilbur and Orville Wright

Edited by Peter Jakab and Rick Young


Format: Trade Paperback, 368 pages
Publisher: Smithsonian Books
On Sale: June 17, 2004
Price: $22.95
ISBN: 978-1-58834-142-6 (1-58834-142-9)

For the first time, nearly seventy of Wilbur and Orville Wright’s published writings are brought together in a single, annotated reference. Spanning the decades from the brothers’ turn-of-the-century experiments with gliders until Orville’s death in 1948, the articles describe the design of their aircraft, early test flights, and camp life at... Read more >

Exam Copy
Ancient Mysteries
Discover the latest intriguiging, Scientifically sound explinations to Age-old puzzles
Written by Peter James and Nick Thorpe


Format: Trade Paperback, 672 pages
Publisher: Ballantine Books
On Sale: October 30, 2001
Price: $23.00
ISBN: 978-0-345-43488-3 (0-345-43488-9)

For centuries, philosophers, scientists, and charlatans have attempted to decipher the baffling mysteries of our past, from Stonehenge to the lost continent of Atlantis. Today, however, DNA testing, radiocarbon dating, and other cutting-edge investigative tools, together with a healthy dose of common sense, are guiding us closer to discovering the truth... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Marketplace of the Marvelous
The Strange Origins of Modern Medicine
Written by Erika Janik


Format: Hardcover, 352 pages
Publisher: Beacon Press
On Sale: January 7, 2014
Price: $28.95
ISBN: 978-0-8070-2208-5 (0-8070-2208-X)

Despite rampant scientific innovation in nineteenth-century America, traditional medicine still adhered to ancient healing methods such as induced vomiting and bleeding, blistering, and sweating patients. Facing such horrors, many patients ran with open arms to burgeoning practices promising new ways to cure their ills: Hydropaths promised cures using “healing tubs.” Franz... Read more >
Also available as an eBook and a trade paperback.

Exam Copy
Ingenious Pursuits
Building the Scientific Revolution
Written by Lisa Jardine


Format: Trade Paperback, 464 pages
Publisher: Anchor
On Sale: December 5, 2000
Price: $17.00
ISBN: 978-0-385-72001-4 (0-385-72001-7)

In this fascinating look at the European scientific advances of the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, historian Lisa Jardine demonstrates that the pursuit of knowledge occurs not in isolation, but rather in the lively interplay and frequently cutthroat competition between creative minds.

The great thinkers of that extraordinary age, including Isaac... Read more >
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