A cloud a day – October 2019 science books

Sometimes we all need encouragement to look up from our lives and work, and really enjoy the natural world around us. This month, our favourite pick is a book that encourages you to do just that, and for extra enjoyment and to make you smile, is a product of the “Cloud Appreciation Society” — A Cloud a Day.

Also featured this month, a slightly older (from mid 2019) but very popular title at the moment — Invisible women : exposing data bias in a world designed for men (also available as an eBook and eAudiobook). Plus, bestselling author of The Secret Life of Trees, Peter Wohlleben, lets us in on the quintessentials of his forestry knowledge and everything you need to make a woodland walk. Enjoy!

A cloud a day / Pretor-Pinney, Gavin
“The stresses of the digital world mean that it’s no more important than ever to engage with the natural world.  A Cloud A Day is a beautifully illustrated book containing 365 skies selected by the Cloud Appreciation Society. There are photographs by sky enthusiasts around the world, satellite images and photographs of clouds in space, as well as skies depicted by great artists over the centuries. The clouds are accompanied by enlightening explanations, fascinating snippets of cloud science, poetry and uplifting quotations.  The perfect dip-in-and-out book for anyone who wants to de-stress and reconnect with nature, A Cloud A Day will inspire you to open your eyes to the everyday beauty above and to spend a moment each day with your head in the clouds. ” (Catalogue)

Invisible women : exposing data bias in a world designed for men / Criado-Perez, Caroline
“Imagine a world where your phone is too big for your hand, where your doctor prescribes a drug that is wrong for your body, where in a car accident you are 47% more likely to be seriously injured, where every week the countless hours of work you do are not recognised or valued. If any of this sounds familiar, chances are that you’re a woman. Invisible Women shows us how, in a world largely built for and by men, we are systematically ignoring half the population. It exposes the gender data gap – a gap in our knowledge that is at the root of perpetual, systemic discrimination against women, and that has created a pervasive but invisible bias with a profound effect on women’s lives. From government policy and medical research, to technology, workplaces, urban planning and the media, Invisible Women reveals the biased data that excludes women.” (Catalogue)

The maths of life and death : why maths is (almost) everything / Yates, Kit
“Few of us really appreciate the full power of maths – the extent to which its influence is not only in every office and every home, but also in every courtroom and hospital ward. In this eye-opening and extraordinary book, Yates explores the true stories of life-changing events in which the application – or misapplication – of mathematics has played a critical role: patients crippled by faulty genes and entrepreneurs bankrupted by faulty algorithms; innocent victims of miscarriages of justice and the unwitting victims of software glitches. You will discover why it’s always sensible to question a statistic, often vital to ask for a second opinion and sometimes surprisingly handy to stick to the 37% rule…” (Catalogue)

Walks in the wild : a guide through the forest with Peter Wohlleben / Wohlleben, Peter
“Bestselling author of The Hidden Life of trees, Peter Wohlleben, lets you in on the quintessentials of his forestry knowledge. He invites you on an atmospheric journey of discovery. Learn to find your way around the woods without a compass or GPS, which berries and mushrooms are good to eat, how to read animal tracks and what it’s like to spend a night alone in a forest. Walks in the Wild has everything you need to make a woodland walk – be it spring, summer, autumn or winter – into a very special experience.” (Catalogue)

The selfish ape : human nature and our path to extinction / Money, Nicholas P
“Weaving together stories of science and sociology, The Selfish Ape offers a refreshing response to common fantasies about the ascent of humanity. Rather than imagining modern humans as a species with godlike powers, or Homo deus, Nicholas P. Money recasts us as Homo narcissus, paragons of self-absorption. This exhilarating story takes in an immense sweep of modern biology, leading readers from earth’s unexceptional location in the cosmos, to the story of our microbial origins, and the workings of the human body. Written in a highly accessible style, it is a perfect read for those interested in science, human history, sociology, and the environment.” (Catalogue)

2020 guide to the night sky : southern hemisphere / Dunlop, Storm
“A comprehensive handbook to the planets, stars and constellations visible from the southern hemisphere. 6 pages for each month covering January-December 2020. Diagrams drawn for the latitude of southern Australia, but including events visible from New Zealand and South Africa.” (Catalogue)

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