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  • Published: 19 June 2017
  • ISBN: 9780141983219
  • Imprint: Penguin Press
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 272
  • RRP: $24.99

Reality Is Not What It Seems

The Journey to Quantum Gravity

'The physicist transforming how we see the universe' (Financial Times)

What are time and space made of? Where does matter come from? And what exactly is reality? Scientist Carlo Rovelli has spent his life exploring these questions and pushing the boundaries of what we know. Here he explains how our image of the world has changed throughout centuries. From Aristotle to Albert Einstein, Michael Faraday to the Higgs boson, he takes us on a wondrous journey to show us that beyond our ever-changing idea of reality is a whole new world that has yet to be discovered.

  • Published: 19 June 2017
  • ISBN: 9780141983219
  • Imprint: Penguin Press
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 272
  • RRP: $24.99

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Praise for Reality Is Not What It Seems

A global superstar... Professor Rovelli is making the grammar of the universe accessible to a new generation

Channel 4 News

Surely Rovelli deserves the title 'world's most inspiring physics teacher'

Daily Telegraph

The physicist transforming how we see the universe

Financial Times

The latest thinking in physics is distilled in this primer... Why do you need yet another popularisation of theoretical physics? Because Rovelli writes with crystalline simplicity. And because he turns quantum physics into a coherent story, shaping it as a quest for a single, underlying "substratum" of reality - from Democritus's finite, indivisible atoms to Einstein

James McConnachie, Sunday Times

Rovelli writes with elegance, clarity and charm... A joy to read, as well as being an intellectual feast

Michael Brooks, New Statesman

Be prepared for your intellectual foundations to be vaporised... Carlo Rovelli will melt your synapses with this exploration of physical reality and what the universe is formed of at the very deepest level... Quantum gravity is so new that there aren't many popular books about it. You couldn't be in better hands than Rovelli, a world expert

Tara Shears, The Times Higher Education

A comprehensive guide to the bewitching adventure of physics

Daily Telegraph

Rather brilliant... for fans of cutting-edge physics made accessible

Mark Haddon

The new Hawking... His writing is luminous. By the time I had finished reading I was in serious awe of the author

David Aaronovitch, The Times

Like all great thinkers, Rovelli has a talent for simplicity. His prose is lucid and poetic... It's not a scientific treatise. It's a paean to the wonder of the natural world... I scraped a C in my Physics O-level and haven't been near a physics textbook since. If I can understand - and even enjoy - Rovelli's book, then anyone can

William Cook, Spectator

A marvel... In exquisitely written pages Rovelli seeks to bridge the divide between what CP Snow called the "Two Cultures" of science and the arts

Ian Thomson, Guardian

May genuinely alter how you see the world

Tom Whipple, The Times

If your desire to be awestruck by the universe we inhabit needs refreshing, theoretical physicist Carlo Rovelli is up to the task


This is a really, really good book about science. It's like a tonic for the mind. Carlo Rovelli is a physicist so of course this book is about physics. But it's much more than that. It's about thinking clearly... He gives beautifully clear explanations of the ideas of the cleverest people in history, from Democritus, via Newton, to Einstein and beyond.

Evening Standard

The most fun physicist to be with -- as well as the greatest explainer of physics

Bryan Appleyard, Sunday Times

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