Science book prize shortlist and a review

Great to record that the Rough Guide to the Future has now made the shortlist for the Science Book Prize. (Details here). That’s good because 7 other titles fell away from the long list, so it’s pleasing to make the grade – and bragging rights extend for a few weeks as the winner is not revealed until Nov 17th. There will also be a jolly evening at the RS to applaud the winner (I’m putting my money on Alex Bellos) and there’s even a decent cheque.

And while recording nice things, here’s a link to my favourite review of the book so far – a generous (in both senses) and thoughtful reading of the tome. It’s by Tim Jones, a science communicator who you can follow on twitter as @phsyicus, and obviously a man of excellent taste and judgement…

ADD: come to think of it, I’ve been compiling nice things people have said to decorate a new book proposal, so here’s the full set of (carefully selected) comments I have found so far…

“A thought-provoking and refreshingly optimistic view of the future across the whole range of the sciences, with a highly original style of brief and multi-focused presentations, that sets it apart from conventional scientific writing.“ Judges’ comment, Royal Society Book Prize shortlist.

“Reading this book will definitely make you feel smarter and give you a good basic grounding on the issues that will confront humanity in the decades ahead.” (from Library Thing)

“Turney has clearly done his homework and deftly uses quotes, facts and asides to enliven the text” New Scientist

“as comprehensive an analysis of forecast data and topical opinion that you’re likely to find, and one I heartily recommend.”

“really very good”. Alex Evans,

“Erudite, pithy, and frequently funny. A tour de force.” Five star review on Amazon UK

“Jon Turney’s writing … is great, wonderfully readable and well crafted”


 “As a general introduction to thinking about the future—one which treats the domain of inquiry as a series of specific dimensions of the future, such as energy, population, food supply, water, health, and ecology/biodiversity—Turneyʼs book is the best I have ever encountered.”

 “an excellent, compelling, accessible overview of futurology that rewards both skimming and deeper reading. Gathering together ideas from many disciplines and opinions from diverse perspectives, he offers a moderate, believable, but still thrilling exploration of what lies ahead.” Mike Treder, Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies.

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