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am 6. August 2000
If I were to have a kid and if this kid were to reach its tenths age, I would surely give it Kip Thorne's excellent book to read and admire. It is an excellent account of the evolution of black hole and gravitational physics, written in a very interesting and clear way. The results are presented and explained in a science fiction spirit first, then comes the superb heuristic explanation of phenomena accompanied by a deep insight into the history of their discovery and the main characters behind it. The author's vivid way of explaining things can also be admired in the bible of gravitation theory called "Gravitation".
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am 19. März 2000
I thought not. I was wrong. The reason: Kip Thorne. I really enjoyed the reading of this book because it offers the theoretical face of the so-called "Black Holes Mechanics" and a very important and delightful part, the history behind the theorems. The book begins with several chapters dedicated almost exclusively to the bases of the Special Theory of Relativity and the General Theory of Relativity, which describes the gravitation field in almost any place of our universe (if you get the book you will see why I say "almost"). Thereafter, the text covers the most important aspects of stellar implosion, which, in fact, brings Black Holes into existence. Once you are immersed in the very topic of the holes, the author studied profoundly their properties with informative boxes, spacetime diagrams, lots of references about discoveries, people and, the great difference with others books, an outstanding and thorough historical background. By the end, the author presents the most excitement predictions about the future use of Black Holes and the yet ill-understood Quantum Gravity Theory (predictions like backward time travel and wormholes). Finally, Kip Thorne closed the book with an excellent glossary of exotic terms and a list of principal characters that appeared throughout the text. I can say, without any doubt, that this is one of the most illustrative and complete books I have ever read, and in my opinion, is a book that every "Black Hole serious student" might have in his/her shelve. If you are looking for a less technical book, I suggest you "Black Holes: A Traveler's Guide" by Clifford Pickover. Nevertheless, if you want a higher challenge, get the book "Gravitation" by Thorne, Wheeler and Misner.
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am 9. Juni 2000
Mr. Thorne has managed to write a book that while going into a lot of detail in explaning the history, the people involved and the science behind Black Holes, Wormholes, and Time Travel, he DOES NOT lose the reader [assuming that Astrophysics is of interest to the reader] due to the amount of detail. The illustrations in the book are superb. Mr. Thorne explains the science in such a way that is not intimidating, but doesn't skimp on the details. I found this to be a better book than "The History of Time". It is a complete package. The glossary at the back of the book is VERY helpfull.
I cannot stress enough how well Kip Thorne explicates on this subject. The amount of technical and mathematical detail instead of being a deterrent was the strenth and potency of this book. Even the history dimension of the book I found interesting. There is a sense of awe, to a person interesting in Astrophysics, in finding out how these people came to be the best in their field and their contribution as well as an understanding of thier contributions.
If I had to recommend one book for someone interested in Black Holes, Time Travel and the like, it would definately be this book! A Cosmic tour-de-force!
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am 27. Juli 2000
This book is long and sometimes difficult, but Thorne keeps the narrative personal and adds lots of his own views and experiences as the book progresses. Contains excellent summaries of the general and special theories of relativity and, of course, lots of information on black hole theory.
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am 5. Februar 1997
It has taught me a great deal about every aspect of physics, ranging from special and general relativity to Einstein's field theory and quantum gravity. Every conceivable object and event is explained in this book; everything in concise everyday language. Nuetron stars, white dwarfs, black holes, time travel, wormholes, and a host of other objects are all covered here. There is also a great deal of scientific history contained in this book, starting with Newton and Galileo, and continuing on until it reaches present day physics.

I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys science, no matter what former knowlegde of physics one has. I had none and I enjoyed and understood every word! This book is a good starting point for novices like me. If you have the motivation, this book has the rest! Noah J. Hayden, age 13
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am 15. Februar 2000
It is really amazing.....I really liked the presentation in which, the author presents the historical facts first then the Physics....I think that this book allows you to have a deeper understanding of physics and expecially black hole formation and evaporation! Besides the amount of information in this book is phenomenal, it is a reference for persons interested in physics and would like to learn more details.
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am 3. Februar 2000
do you like to understand thing al little more deep than others, have you read a little physics before if your answers are yes even if you are not na expert this book is going to be perfect for you, the insights and new ways to review old theories is great, for my was insight pure insight and I hoe it will be for you to
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am 8. Januar 1997
Science fiction can only hope to emulate the deep intricacy and magnificent wonder that the reality of our universe can boast. While seemingly complex and evasive in nature, the laws that govern our universe hold answers that may astound even the most imaginitive. Kip Thorne has elegantly captured the "majic" of the universe and tamed the unknown into an understandable context.
Understadable, that is, for anyone you has ever wondered about the universe and the mysteries it holds. Thorne's gift for theoretical physics and penchance of explanation creates a "window" of understanding to the reader where other authors of the same field have mistakenly left the layman reader struggling. Through the use of thought experiments and historical enlightenment,
Thorne had me suggesting answers to questions I had never encountered before. Black Holes and Time Warps is a zesty meal for the inquisitive. Managable and tantelizing to the "physically challenged" and physicist alike. This exquiset quisine will leave the reader satiated yet ravenous for more.
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am 10. Januar 2000
This is the story of the some most exciting scientific developments to date, spanning the entire twentieth century, as delightfully told by one of its main actors. Without the least condescension, the author takes great pains to make difficult technical concepts (almost) accessible to the lay reader. He clearly works on the assumption that the reader is intelligent and curious, though not necessarily knowledgeable in physics or mathematics. (It is probably not a coincidence that Kip Thorne is the Richard Feynman Professor of Physics at Caltech!) Furthermore, being very much on the "inside," Thorne succeeds in telling a very human story about the amazing characters involved in the search, thus giving lots of insights into the way science is practiced around the world. The end of the story will probably be revealed sometime in the twenty-first century when, in the words of John Archibald Wheeler, the theories of General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics "consume their fiery marriage." Thanks, Kip -- I can't wait for the sequel!
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am 31. Dezember 1999
Once a reader embarks on the journey of discovery through this book, it is hard to turn back. Thorne manages to keep one interested, with each topic and chapter logically following from the last. He uses numerous diagrams, photographs and simple language to enlighten the reader. For example his illustration of how stars of various mass 'die' gives a masterful introductory explanation into white dwarfs, neutron stars and black holes in one diagram!
This book not only describes complex cosmological phenomena, but gives concise accounts of the people involved and their political and social influences. It is essential reading for anyone interested in the mysteries of space and leaves the reader contented that he now has at least some comprehension of phenomena that everyone seems to have heard about (quasers, pulsars, neutron stars, black holes) but few understand.
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