Most helpful critical review
Really well written, but poor approach to both the topics he's trying to write about.
on August 1, 2015
This was not really one of the best books I have read. There is some OK writing about science. There is some OK writing criticising any kind of mysticism.
Sadly, Dawkins is *not* very good at writing about science and really explaining it (his book The God Delusion actually is probably some of his best scientific writing, as he's not *really* trying, but he comes closest to getting it right). There are a lot of issues with how he writes about science, that anyone who has taken science by someone who really understands it (should be stuff you learn in high school, or even earlier, but if you haven't learnt it by the end of your first year University studies, don't go into science) sees where he gets things "kind or, sort of, maybe a little bit right" but he really misses the big point.
Most of his science writing is *mostly* about trying to "disprove the religious people" and sadly, he ends up really doing nothing for anyone's understanding of science this way, nor does he really help anyone really understand what is wrong with religion this way.
In a way, he turns science into scientism. That is, the "religious following of science (and quite often pseudoscience)" rather than actual science.
On the other hand, he *does* tend to be rather readable. I rarely find that when reading his books that I have to go back to understand what he said, unless I am pretty much out of it. Other writers on the other going 5 pages without having to stop, go back, re-read, still be confused, then actually have to try to parse the sentence in a "manual" type way (yes, I usually end up doing so in my head) is really rare. '
So, if you just want something to read, that isn't really going to tax you with the reading, this would *totally* be an excellent book to read, *and* it is *not* very long. Unlike The God Delusion, and many of his books, this one actually feels like he really didn't go overboard in writing way too much. Something I am very prone to.