Welcome to our weekly Books Digest where we round up the new books you should and shouldn’t, be reading. This week features Existential Physics: A Scientist’s Guide to Life’s Biggest Questions by Sabine Hossenfelder, Diana, William and Harry by James Patterson and Haven by Emma Donoghue.
For more books, take a look through our Books Digest Archive.
Existential Physics: A Scientist’s Guide to Life’s Biggest Questions by Sabine Hossenfelder (Atlantic Books, £12.39)
Despite centuries of progress in modern science, the biggest questions of metaphysics have ultimately remained unanswered: How did the universe begin, and how will it end? Does God exist? And what is consciousness?
In her latest book Existential Physics, theoretical physicist Sabine Hossenfelder explains which questions scientists are near to finding an answer to, where the current limits lie and why some questions may forever remain unanswered.
One of the most prominent commentators on modern physics, Hossenfelder is unapologetic in her frank and, at times, demonstrative views — offering refreshing insight into the limitations of scientific knowledge as well as its inherent relevance.
Existential Physics is an entertaining read that will reshape your understanding of science and its role in humanity’s continued search for meaning in our increasingly unknown universe.
Diana, William and Harry by James Patterson and Chris Mooney (Cornerstone, £13.59)
Published 25 years after her death, Diana, William and Harry by James Patterson and Chris Mooney, tells the heartbreaking story of Princess Diana and her life as a princess, mother and activist.
Mixing biography with imagined dialogue the authors paint an intimate portrait of the princess and her sons. Cinematic vignettes are used to recount key events in the Princess’ life; from the coercion of Prince Charles by his father to marry 20-year-old Diana Spencer to the birth of their two sons and Princess Diana’s tragic death.
Patterson applies his skills as a novelist to real-life history, creating a well-paced, deeply personal and revealing biography of one of the world’s most talked-about families. Filled with intriguing anecdotes and sharp character observations Diana, William and Harry is an endearing and persuasive look at an integral and tumultuous part of the royal family.
Haven by Emma Donoghue (Pan Macmillan, £12.59)
Set in 17th-century Ireland, Haven tells the story of Artt, a scholar and priest who dreams of a calling to found a new monastery away from the sins of human civilisation. He sets off with the two other monks who appeared in his dream — the unlikely pairing of young Trian and old Cormac — down the river Shannon and out into the Atlantic, eventually settling on the remote island known today as Skellig Michael, found west of the Iveragh Peninsula in County Kerry, Ireland.
Untouched by mankind, they claim the island for God and with only faith to guide them, attempt to live off the uninhabitable land. In a story of survival and faith, Emma Donoghue reflects on humankind’s attempt to control nature in a way that is just as relevant (if not more) now as it was in the 17th century. Haven is a very different book to Donoghue’s past work including Room, for which she first reached critical acclaim, but it is robust evidence of her vast imagination and continued efforts to explore human psychology in the strangest of circumstances.
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