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  • The Story of Light

  • By: Ben Bova
  • Narrated by: Stefan Rudnicki
  • Length: 6 hrs and 10 mins
  • 4.2 out of 5 stars (18 ratings)

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The Story of Light cover art

The Story of Light

By: Ben Bova
Narrated by: Stefan Rudnicki
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Summary

From the creation of life to the exploration of the heavens and the stars, from the origins of the earth to the possibility of life on other planets, Ben Bova unveils the beauty and science behind this phenomenon. Bova masterfully explains how light affects us every day of our lives, from our religions to our sex drives. He examines how we use light in art, science, industry, entertainment, cosmetics, jewelry, and in a myriad other ways. In graphic, entertaining, and always accesible prose, the author provides fascinating insights into a great variety of subjects so that the listener will discover something new and wonderful about almost every area of knowledge, ranging from relativity and quantum physics to perspective and the use of light by great Renaissance painters. A stunning, clear, and always fascinating writer, Dr. Bova provides easy to understand examples that make available to us all even the most difficult and mind-bending concepts.
©2001 Ben Bova (P)2001 Fantastic Audio

Critic reviews

"The abridgment, competently read by Stefan Rudnicki...is interesting and easy to understand." ( Library Journal)
"Stefan Rudnicki has a deep, pleasing voice, that makes him sound like the friendly neighbor next door in a particularly philosophical mood. He breezes through this book of facts and theories about light with a comfort level that makes one think he does this every day." ( AudioFile)

What listeners say about The Story of Light

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Not what I was expecting, but I liked it anyway

Any additional comments?

I was looking for a more scientific discussion of light regarding the physics of light and its relationship to theories like Relativity, however, I was pleased with the technical and scientific narrative and found it very rewarding. I recommend this book to those who like to learn about stuff...

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Love it!

Would you listen to The Story of Light again? Why?

It was very captivating and full of interesting facts. Yeah, I would listen to it again after few moths to refresh my memory and enjoy it again

What other book might you compare The Story of Light to, and why?

Different in context, but I'd compare this book to Death by Black Hole by Neil Tyson. These two books focused on a single subject and went to great lengths to explain it to the average Joe.

Have you listened to any of Stefan Rudnicki’s other performances? How does this one compare?

No, I haven't

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 27-02-05

Well done!

I approached this book with some trepidation since science topics tend to either be watered down, or texts in the guise of popular books. However I should not have worried. Bova made the topic light as engaging as his many science fiction novels (in fact, I felt this moved at a pace surpassing his fiction, and with more humor), and the coverage of the topics were comprehensive, but thoroughly enjoyable and accurate.

10 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Roger
  • 15-10-04

Great

Enjoyed book enough to listen to it twice on my last vacaton

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Matt Lagrotte
  • 09-06-07

Amazing! Stunning!

This is one of the best I've heard for having such a conversational writing style. I was sad when it was over and wished he had delved deeper into some of the topics. Being a photographer, I am totally intrigued with the whole subject of light. This story was informative and sent my imaginationon a trip thru the solar system.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Charlie
  • 10-09-12

A great listen

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes. For those interested in the history & science of light without the text book it is a great listen.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Story of Light?

The discussion of the particle theory of light being displaced by the wave theory of light and then combining the theories.

What does Stefan Rudnicki bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Emphasizes the ironies.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • John
  • 17-07-10

The story of Light

This is, by far the most enjoyable educational book I have ever listened toO, and I am 66 and listened to thousands of books of this type.
I can say nothing but thank you, as I am passing it on to my 8 Grandchildren

Again, THANK YOU.

JOHN SCHMIDT

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 28-10-08

Good on multiple fronts

I'm a photographer who loves science. This book covers light in interesting ways as well as has some excellent scientific segments.

1 person found this helpful

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  • James
  • 24-03-21

An illuminating book of moments

This is a well-curated collection of moments in the history of science all having to do with light.

It covers theory e.g. the electromagnetic spectrum, and technology e.g. the invention of limelight.

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  • Owen Baxter
  • 12-03-20

Pretty good

Some fairly interesting material, but I noticed several errors and some of it is fairly outdated (which is fair, since it is almost 20 years old).

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  • Alexandra Hopkins
  • 28-09-18

All about light--once over lightly

I enjoyed this book about light. It's basically "all about light"--what it is, the history of the study of light, and how it's used. The physics is treated once-over quickly--not with a great deal of depth. Ben Bova writes in an enjoyable style. It's really a book about "everything you wanted to know about light but were afraid to ask." Many different topics are covered and explained in general terms without profound depth. If you want a survey of what is known about light, this is the book for you.