The Science Of Discworld and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Vous voulez voir cette page en français ? Cliquez ici.

Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Start reading The Science Of Discworld on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

The Science of Discworld [Hardcover]

Stewart&cohen Pratchett
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

Available from these sellers.


Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition CDN $9.99  
Hardcover --  
Paperback CDN $13.68  
Join Amazon Student in Canada

Book Description

Aug. 3 1999
Everyone from the fantasy universe of Discworld knows that the world is flat, and that a million-in-one chance crops up 90per cent of the time. In our world, science tells us that our more "logical" universe does not obey common sense at all. This book uses Discworld science to illuminate our science.

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

Product Details

Product Description


"For Pratchett and Discworld devotees the volume is, of course, compulsory reading, but even science buffs who would normally eschew anything resembling fantasy will find much here to pique their interests.... The book adds another whimsical episode to Discworld lore and contrasts the magical 'rules' of Pratchett’s realm with the human world’s more logic-oriented science." --Booklist

"The hard science is as gripping as the fiction." --The Times (London)

"An irreverent but genuinely profound romp through the history and philosophy of science, cunningly disguised as a collection of funny stories about wizards and mobile luggage." --Frontiers
"Terry Pratchett is more than a magician. He is the kindest, most fascinating teacher you ever had." --Harlan Ellison --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From the Publisher

The Sunday Times bestseller, fully revised and updated. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Apart from being a Pratchett fan, I'm an almost post graduate biology student interested in education en popularising science. Therefore, this book stands high on my list of best books ever. Apart from a very entertaining story featuring the ever-blundering wizards of U.U. (and Rincewind in the role of Professor of Unusual and Cruel Geography), this is really a very, very good science textbook.
The strength of the science book part (reviews on the story can be found aplenty on this page) is that it is for one thing very clearly structured, starting with the "birth" of the universe as we now perceive it and ending with a (maybe) over-the-top look into the future. But apart from this comprehensive structure, the science writing is also very clever. Many science books just state what is known, so only the dry facts. The authors of this book also give a framework, for example some history of how knowledge is obtained, a process that is mostly unknown to those who have not followed an academic science education.
But that's not all. Many times the authors start out by stating something that is known to everybody, giving the explanations we all learn in high school. And then they go about by showing us how exactly these high school explanation (or "lies-to-children" as they call them) are wrong, or at least a small part of the truth, giving a much more complicated image of how things work and even leaving things unexplained (because that's how it is in science, not all things can be explained satisfactorily). And that is, in my opinion, the strength of the book, a glimpse is given on how science is practised, how knowledge is gained and how things are always more complicated than you think they are.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun and Frolic Through Physics and Beyond Sept. 2 2002
What can I say? If you love Prachett, the wizards and have an open mind this one's for you! The science part of this book is written with humour and wit so it never sounds like one of your old college text books. The Discworld story that accompanies and introduces the science chapters is wonderful in and of itself. Putting them together in this book makes it one great educational read.
Was this review helpful to you?
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Brief History of the World Nov. 16 2002
By Sharon
We are watching the wizards of Unseen University watching an Earth-like planet be created. Sounds complicated? Not really...
A brief, yet in-depth (I don't know how that can work, but it does) explanation on how it is currently believed out world works is nothing short of miraculous, especially due to the clarity in which it is explained. Interlaced with a story about the wizards' experiments with their new toy planet, this book is completely riveting and highly informative.
Was this review helpful to you?
3.0 out of 5 stars But I'm a Pratchett fan - really July 14 2005
This is really two great books. The first is a wizard's experiment gone wrong at the Unseen University. A chain reaction in their squash court (sound familiar?) has released an unprecedented amount of thaumic energy. Before it could be channeled safely, it materializes a world, in fact a whole star system. But this world isn't a disc, it's round --
The second book is a witty, well informed scientific commentary on many things, but especially on the history of life on earth. (I only noticed one mis-step in the real science, a statement about the stability of a an oxygen isotope. They probably slid that error in to make nitpickers like me feel smug.)
The problem is, this is just one book. Chapters alternate in odd-even pairs, Discworld fantasy and Ourworld fact. I probably should have read the book twice, all the odd chapters then all the even ones. As it was, I found my attention whipsawed between the two. The total was distractingly less than the sum of the parts.
It's clever, amusing and informative. The back-and-forth style just didn't work for me, though.
Was this review helpful to you?
4.0 out of 5 stars Under-rated March 9 2002
Science of Discworld is one of the lesser-known, but nonethless highly entertaining of Terry Pratchett's books. Mixing Discworld madness with educational necessity, Pratchett dispenses large doses of what should be compulsory reading for school kids.
The book is both intelligent and humorous (which accolade, I believe can be applied to most Pratchett works) and demands an intellectual engagement on the part of the reader. Hard science mixes with Pratchett-style fiction but ultimately tells the history of the world as it is (or at least as most people believe it is). The author is not afraid to go where few satirists have gone before, exploring everything from astrophysics through relativity to quantum mechanics and evolution... and always with one eye on the outrageous.
Pratchett has the skill to mock his fellow creatures, but oh so gently, and always with a warm heart. As a fellow reviewer said "To me at 50, it is an epiphany; I can only imagine the personal impact if I had read this at 15". Likewise, I would have appreciated knowing a little more earlier on in my life, particularly if helped through the morass by the guiding hand of Terry Pratchett.
Was this review helpful to you?
5.0 out of 5 stars It's Magick! well, not exactly... Oct. 26 2001
By Binder
"The Science of Discworld" by Terry Pratchett, Ian Stewart, and Jack Cohen isn't really about Discworld. Well, in a way, it -is- about Discworld, but it really is a lot more about well, "Life on Earth".
This book is amazingly comprehensive about modern science, both what science -is- and how it got be that way. Topics run a happy gamut from space elevators (as in Arthur Clarke's "Fountains Of Paradise") to DNA (another "space elevator") to gravity (Newtonian, and Einsteinian) to mutation, the origins of Life, evolution, and the Turtle that carries the Universe on its back. (Oops! wrong Universe.)
An interesting concept that helps to form the basis of this book is "Lies to Children"; these are those "facts" we are presented with from early on in our awareness, by people that aren't happy with the truth. "Where do babies come from?" is a question that often results in a "lie to children"; adults, often assuming that their children aren't sufficiently mature enough to understand the concept of conception, tend to offer a somewhat abridged version of the truth that does little to enlighten anyone.
"The Science of Discworld" presents an array of "lies to children" and the facts as we know them, now. It allows for the inevitable future discoveries, while presenting what we (in the scientific sense) believe we know about "Life, the Universe, and Everything" in an easily digestable fashion.
All this information could be bewildering; this presentation isn't. This is good, readable, non-fiction with solid facts, interesting (and logical) conclusions, and with all the strange twists and turns of a good "who-done-it," with a fair smidgen of sci-fi-fantasy thrown in.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
Want to see more reviews on this item?

Look for similar items by category