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Know It All

132 Head-Scratching Questions About the Science All Around Us

By New Scientist

Edited by Mick O'Hare

A joy for science lovers, Know It All is your ticket to a grand meeting of curious minds!

New Scientist magazine’s beloved “Last Word” column is a rare forum for “un-Google-able” queries: Readers write in, and readers respond! Know It All collects 132 of the column’s very best Q&As. The often-wacky questions cover physics, chemistry, zoology and beyond: When will Mount Everest cease to be the tallest mountain on the planet?If a thermometer was in space, what would it read?Why do some oranges have seeds, and some not?Many people suffer some kind of back pain. Is it because humans haven’t yet perfected the art of walking upright? And the unpredictable answers showcase the brainpower of New Scientist’s readers, like the anatomist who chimes in about back pain (“Evolution is not in the business of perfecting anything.”) and the vet who responds, “Quadrupeds can get backache too!”

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New Scientist

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Mick O'Hare

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Review quotes
A Guardian Top 10 Science and Technology book

“An entertaining and intellectually stimulating read.”—Shelf Awareness

“The experts at New Scientist magazine have published a book that answers some of the oddest but most entertaining questions they’ve been asked.”—Daily Mail

“Explain[s] some of life’s great mysteries.”—Reveal

“Answers the questions you’ve probably wondered all your life.”—Wales Online

“Great answers to common dinner party questions.”—Good Housekeeping

“More intriguing questions and answers from the New Scientist Magazine archives. Stumped for ideas for Christmas presents? Then this might be the ideal choice for anyone—teen to old-age. All you need is an interest in the curiosities of life!”—LoveReading

“There are so many phenomena out there which we accept from day to day but if we ever stop to think about them, we don’t have any explanations. Never fear—[. . . ] New Scientist [. . .] has the answers to these questions and more.”—Mirror

“New Scientist magazine has compiled a book answering the most obscure and intriguing questions they’ve ever been asked.”—Newsbreaker

“Poses questions asked by the curious the world over and offers sometimes varying— and often highly theoretical—answers offered by experts, academics, engineers, teachers, philosophers and assorted know-alls . . . . There are head-scratchers here aplenty.”—The Clothesline
Product Details
Number of pages
Publication date
February 24, 2015