Top Ten Tuesday: Books for Readers Who Like SCIENCE

the broke and the bookish

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish

I can’t believe it’s been over three months since I’ve done a Top Ten Tuesday! Yikes. The topic this week is Ten Books For Readers Who Like _________.  I’m using this week to talk about books for readers who like science – mind you, I said like. You don’t have to be super in love with science to enjoy the books on this list; an interest in science is fine. It’s going to be a mix of fiction and non-fiction, no degree in science required.

Jim Al-Khalili

1. Paradox by Jim Al-Khalili – This is a DELIGHTFUL little book, in which the author examines nine so-called paradoxes and delves into them to reveal that they aren’t paradoxes, really. Brain teasers and mind-bending abound, but Al-Khalili uses science and logic to solve them all. I have Al-Khalili’s other books on my wishlist.

Marie and Pierre Curie, Lauren Redniss

2. Radioactive by Lauren Redniss – A big, gorgeous book that examines Marie Curie’s life and work in radioactivity. Comics fans especially will appreciate the art used in the book. Would make a GREAT gift, too.


3. Nexus by Ramez Naam – Illegal nano-drugs used to connect minds to minds? To enhance human ability? To be able to download programs in your brain? Yeah, I’m so there. This was a really fun, intense read and led to some of those delicious “would you?” conversations with friends.

Physics of the Future book cover, Michio Kaku

4. Physics of the Future by Michio Kaku – This book was SO. INTERESTING. Kaku takes a look at different facets of our daily lives and predicts how insanely different they’ll be in 100 years, based on current science and technology trends and developments. How will travel be different? Medicine? Communication? Just talking about it makes me want to go back and re-read it.

5. Manhattan Projects by Jonathan Hickman and Nick Pitarra – This comic series continues to have a special place in my heart. The premise is this: What is the Manhattan Project wasn’t really about creating the atomic bomb? What if it was a cover for some way more weird, crazy science? Rings about a billion of my bells.


6. How We Got to Now by Steven Johnson – Ever wonder about the effects that artificial cold has had on modern life? No? Well, maybe you should I promise, it is way more fascinating than it sounds. Johnson looks at six innovations that completely changed the landscape of our world, the science behind them, and their impact.

The Martian by Andy Weir

7. The Martian by Andy Weir – Come on, this book had to be on this list. MARS! HUMOR! SCIENCE!

Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

8. Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton – My favorite parts of this book were the bits when the scientists were explaining exactly how they screwed around with genetics to bring the dinosaurs back. Is it completely plausible? Not necessarily. But it’s so fun.

space chronicles

9. Space Chronicles by Neil deGrasse Tyson – A collection of articles and essays in which Tyson explains the importance of space exploration, why NASA deserves more of our tax pennies, and laments how sad it is that being smart isn’t considered cool anymore. Basically a fantastic collection of awesome from the mind of Neil deGrasse Tyson. You can’t go wrong with this one.


10. Alif the Unseen by G. Willow Wilson – This is one of those books that I think never gets enough praise. It’s about a young computer hacker who protects people from the government surveillance, who finds a secret book of the jinn, and bad things happen. Computer technology blended with jinn mysticism, and it was so fantastic and beautiful.

And because I can’t help myself, some other notable mentions:

  • Undeniable by Bill Nye (evolution, non-fiction)
  • Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro (cloning, fiction)
  • Stiff by Mary Roach (cadavers / medical science, non-fiction)
  • Neanderthal Parallax trilogy by Robert J. Sawyer (evolution, quantum physics, fiction)

Have you read any on this list? Do you have any suggestions? I love books with a science angle, in any form really. Give me books to add to my TBR!




    1. Alif the Unseen was pretty fantastic, as is the Manhattan Projects. It was just recently pointed out to me that Manhattan Projects is full of dudes, no female characters, which does suck… but I just love how nerdy and ridiculous it is.


  1. Great theme! I’m a big science person – after attending a liberal arts high school, I was thrilled to load up on science courses in college – but I don’t necessarily read about science much. In fact, the only book on you mentioned that I have read is Stiff by Mary Roach (loved it!). However, I recently purchased The Martian and I’ve always wanted to read Jurassic Park. I’m definitely going to check out some of the others.


  2. I haven’t read any of these, but your #6 and #10 have been on my TBR list for a long time. I’ll have to go check out Radioactive. Do you know The Poisoner’s Handbook? All about medical research in the 1920s.


  3. These are awesome choices! I particularly love Radioactive — my littlest sister bought it for my second-oldest sister a few Christmases ago, and I so much wanted to keep it for myself. The illustrations are gorgeous.

    Maybe something by Ben Goldacre? Oo, and Delusions of Gender! That one’s about a lot of other things besides science, but it made me remember to always check people’s citations in scientific studies. She does a whole section where she checks on information in scientific studies, and it was shocking to me. And I think of myself as being fairly cynical.


  4. I read a fair bit of sci fi so I wrestled about what to include. I erred on the side of brevity.

    The Andromeda Strain by Michael Crichton
    Anything by Robert J Sawyer
    Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
    Twinmaker series by Sean Williams
    Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
    The Code Book by Simon Singh
    The Martian by Andy Weir
    Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson


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