Published on September 6th, 2022 | by Chris O'Connor

Universe Book Review

Universe Book Review Chris O'Connor

Summary: Explore the universe from the comfort of your own home... or step outside and get a better idea of where to look to see some amazing sites.


Univers(al) Appeal

With the successful launch of the James Webb Space Telescope and the first images coming in… it’s hard to deny our universe has some truly spectacular sites. DK’s Universe: The Definitive Visual Guide takes readers through the essential concepts of astronomy from visual observing, to the variety of telescopes and their uses. But then we get into the true core of this book… an exploration of the cosmos, from our own solar system, our own galaxy and beyond.

The start of the book goes over the concepts of astronomy and some of the physics behind it. We get a brief overview of the key scientific theories that have helped us get a better understanding of the universe, starting from our own little spot in it and stretching further and further out as our understanding grew. We are then taken through the different methods of observing and how to observe in your own location, including tips for how to set up a telescope.

Then we start to look at our part of the neighbourhood, we examine the sun, the earth and the planets of our solar system, examining different aspects of them from orbit to structure, atmosphere to surface features and geography. After exploring our planets and asteroids and other local features… we move out into the galaxy. We then move on to the Milky Way Galaxy before taking a look beyond. Finally we have the night sky as we can observe it from earth, guides for what to look for and where to find them covering both southern and northern hemisphere.

The book features colour coded pages so you can jump straight to the section you want simply by looking at the colour on the edge of the pages. Some of the images are quite striking (I can only imagine what sort of additions will be made in future updates with the James Webb Space Telescope continuing to send back it’s amazing data).

The end result is Universe makes for a multipurpose book. It’s great as a quick guide to astronomy and our solar system. It is indeed (as the subtitle says) a “… visual guide”. The time you spend absorbed in the striking visuals will no doubt get you excited for the other main use of the book which is as a guide to observing your own night sky. After setting up your telescope as instructed by the book, you can then reference it’s night sky guide for what to look for on your own observing sessions.

A great addition to any astronomy fans collection and a very handy reference book. Grab a copy and look to the sky.

About the Author'

Father of four, husband of one and all round oddity. Gaming at home since about 1982 with a Sinclair ZX Spectrum. Moving on to the more traditional PC genre in the years that followed with the classic Jump Joe and Alley Cat. CGA, EGA, VGA and beyond PC's have been central to my gaming but I've also enjoyed consoles and hand helds along the way (who remembers the Atari Lynx?). Would have been actor/film maker, jack of many trades master of none.

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