Best Science Books 2011: The Independent

Dec 08 2011 Published by under best science books 2011, science books

Another list for your reading, gift-giving and collection development pleasure.

Every year for the last bunch of years I've been linking to and posting about all the "year's best sciencey books" lists that appear in various media outlets and shining a bit of light on the best of the year.

All the previous 2011 lists are here.

This post includes the following: The Independent Biography: Near-deaths and divine rebirths, History: Countries of the mind, Science & Nature: Planetary possibilities.

  • Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson
  • The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined by Steven Pinker
  • The Beginning of Infinity: Explanations That Transform the World by David Deutsch
  • Proust Was a Neuroscientist by Jonah Lehrer
  • The New North: The World in 2050 by Laurence C. Smith
  • The Lost Photographs of Captain Scott: Unseen Images from the Legendary Antarctic Expedition by David M. Wilson
  • Geek Nation: How Indian Science is Taking Over the World by Angela Saini
  • A More Perfect Heaven: How Copernicus Revolutionized the Cosmos by Dava Sobel
  • Missing Links: In Search of Human Origins by John Reader
  • The Origin of Our Species by Chris Stringer
  • The Address Book: Our Place in the Scheme of Things by Tim Radford
  • The Better Angels of Our Nature: The Decline of Violence in History and Its Causes by Steven Pinker
  • Unnatural: The Heretical Idea of Making People by Philip Ball
  • The Magic of Reality: How we know what's really true by Richard Dawkins and Dave McKean
  • The Perfumier and the Stinkhorn by Richard Mabey

I'm always looking for recommendations and notifications of book lists as they appear in various media outlets. If you see one that I haven't covered, please let me know at jdupuis at yorku dot ca or in the comments.

I am picking up a lot of lists from Largehearted Boy.

The summary post for 2010 books is here and all the posts for 2010 can be found here. For 2009, it's here and here.

For my purposes, I define science books pretty broadly to include science, engineering, computing, history & philosophy of science & technology, environment, social aspects of science and even business books about technology trends or technology innovation. Deciding what is and isn't a science book is squishy at best, especially at the margins, but in the end I pick books that seem broadly about science and technology rather than something else completely. Lists of business, history or nature books are among the tricky ones.

And if you wish to support my humble list-making efforts, run on over to Amazon, take a look at Steve Jobs and consider picking that one up or something else from the lists.

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