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Adam Rutherford's Top Book Recommendations

Want to know what books Adam Rutherford recommends on their reading list? We've researched interviews, social media posts, podcasts, and articles to build a comprehensive list of Adam Rutherford's favorite book recommendations of all time.

A history of what we think we know about the brain

For thousands of years, thinkers and scientists have tried to understand what the brain does. Yet, despite the astonishing discoveries of science, we still have only the vaguest idea of how the brain works. In The Idea of the Brain, scientist and historian Matthew Cobb traces how our conception of the brain has evolved over the centuries. Although it might seem to be a story of ever-increasing knowledge of biology, Cobb shows how our ideas about the brain have been shaped by each era's most significant...
Recommended by Adam Rutherford, and 1 others.

Adam RutherfordThis isn’t my precise blurb, but this book is fucking brilliant. (Source)

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Well-behaved women don’t make history: difficult women do.

Feminism’s success is down to complicated, contradictory, imperfect women, who fought each other as well as fighting for equal rights. Helen Lewis argues that too many of these pioneers have been whitewashed or forgotten in our modern search for feel-good, inspirational heroines. It’s time to reclaim the history of feminism as a history of difficult women.

In this book, you’ll meet the working-class suffragettes who advocated bombings and arson; the princess who discovered why so many women were having...
Recommended by Adam Rutherford, Caitlin Moran, and 2 others.

Adam RutherfordMay our lives be filled with difficult women. @helenlewis, one of this country’s best journalists has written an essential book. (Source)

Caitlin MoranHAPPY PUBLICATION DAY to @helenlewis, and I can't recommend this book enough. Brilliant, funny, angry - a tribal elder explaining why feminism can be so messy, awful and amazing, with some ASTONISHING stories about incredible women. A genuine brain-and-heart treat. (Source)

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The Adventures of Alexander Von Humboldt

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Invention of Nature , comes a breathtakingly illustrated and brilliantly evocative recounting of Alexander Von Humboldt's five year expedition in South America.

Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859) was an intrepid explorer and the most famous scientist of his age. His restless life was packed with adventure and discovery, but his most revolutionary idea was a radical vision of nature as a complex and interconnected global force that does not exist...
Recommended by Adam Rutherford, and 1 others.

Adam RutherfordAs featured on #BBCInsideScience tomorrow, @andrea_wulf is launching this marvelous book on Monday at the @Ri_Science. She is a brilliant speaker and Humboldt is an amazing character, whom we should all know more about (and maybe be more like). (Source)

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The Science of Storytelling

‘One of my absolute favourite writers’ Decca Aitkenhead

Who would we be without stories?

Stories mould who we are, from our character to our cultural identity. They drive us to act out our dreams and ambitions, and shape our politics and beliefs. We use them to construct our relationships, to keep order in our law courts, to interpret events in our newspapers and social media. Storytelling is an essential part of what makes us human.

There have been many attempts to understand what makes a good story – from Joseph Campbell’s...

Recommended by Hannah Fry, Adam Rutherford, and 2 others.

Hannah FryThis is the intro to The Science of Storytelling by @wstorr. Easily the best book I've read this year. (Source)

Adam RutherfordTomorrow night at @WaterstonesTCR I’ll be in conversation with @wstorr about his brilliant book The Science of Storytelling - a book that has made me change how I write. Come. (Source)

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