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book cover of The Story of Light

The Story of Light

(2001)
A non fiction book by

 
 
rolific SF and nonfiction writer (Venus, etc.) and former editor of Omni and Analog, Bova once rhapsodized about The Beauty of Light (an ALA Best Science Book of 1988). He now offers this secondary source-based introduction to light's influence on aspects of human experience, "from our religions to our sex drives." Those looking for inspired, penetrating insights will be disappointed: "Great artists, even those who came long before our modern understanding of human vision, used their own eyes and minds, their own observations of the world around them and of human behavior, to produce works of immortal beauty." The lack of illustrations is also a serious drawback. But with a 25,000-copy initial printing, an eight-city author tour and 1,500 galleys in circulation, this book should reach Bova's core SF fans, who may pick this one up for themselves or for their older children. Endogenous pacemakers (the light-sensitive "clock inside your brain"), the birth of the sun, lasers, astrology (it "was, is, and always will be entirely rubbish") and the camera obscura all make appearances, and Bova draws on examples from all corners, from medieval optics author Alhazen to Daguerre, James Clerk Maxwell and Einstein. While sheathed in filler, Bova's illustrative thought experiments hit the mark, and his breezy affability is evident throughout, making this a decent primer.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

    

Used availability for Ben Bova's The Story of Light

Hardback Editions

September 2001 : USA Hardback
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Title: The Story of Light
Author(s): Ben Bova
ISBN: 1-57071-785-0 / 978-1-57071-785-7 (USA edition)
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


Paperback Editions

January 2017 : Paperback
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Title: The Story of Light - Color Image Addendum
Author(s): Dr Ben Bova
ISBN: 1-5425-9258-5 / 978-1-5425-9258-1
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


January 2017 : Paperback
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Title: The Story of Light
Author(s): Dr Ben Bova
ISBN: 1-5425-9254-2 / 978-1-5425-9254-3
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


October 2002 : USA Paperback
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Title: The Story of Light
Author(s): Ben Bova
ISBN: 1-4022-0009-9 / 978-1-4022-0009-0 (USA edition)
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


Audio Editions

July 2004 : USA Audio edition
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Title: The Story of Light
Author(s): Ben Bova
Publisher: Phoenix Books
Availability: Amazon   


July 2004 : Canada Audio edition
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Title: The Story of Light
Author(s): Ben Bova
Publisher: Phoenix Books
Availability: Amazon CA   


July 2004 : UK Audio edition
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Title: The Story of Light
Author(s): Ben Bova
Publisher: Phoenix Books
Availability: Amazon UK   


November 2001 : USA Audio Cassette
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Title: The Story of Light
Author(s): Stefan Rudnicki, Ben Bova
ISBN: 1-57453-469-6 / 978-1-57453-469-6 (USA edition)
Publisher: Phoenix Audio
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


Kindle Editions

July 2012 : USA, Canada, UK Kindle edition
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Title: The Story of Light
Author(s): Ben Bova
Publisher: ReAnimus Press
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA