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My Brief History

3.53  ·  Rating Details ·  4,061 Ratings  ·  554 Reviews

Stephen Hawking has dazzled readers worldwide with a string of bestsellers exploring the mysteries of the universe. Now, for the first time, perhaps the most brilliant cosmologist of our age turns his gaze inward for a revealing look at his own life and intellectual evolution.

My Brief History recounts Stephen Hawking’s improbable journey, from his post
Hardcover, 126 pages
Published September 10th 2013 by Bantam (first published 2013)
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Brendon Schrodinger
Thanks to and Random House Publishing Group for a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

Cross-posted on my blog, The Periodic Table of Elephants.

I have never read any Hawking before *gasp*, so what a place to start, on his autobiography. Titled 'My Brief History' is really is brief and to the point.

The style of this autobiography is terse, to the point, and mainly about his academic achievements. His children and wives get a brief mention, which is reassuring, with the only
Sep 15, 2013 Joel rated it it was ok
Shelves: biography, science
I feel like a terrible person giving this book two stars... I'm sure Mr. Hawking has far more important things to do, think about, and write about than himself... and it shows in the book. One wonders why he bothered or why he didn't hire a biographer to write a more concise story instead of making it a slim-volume autobiography. I'm sure, given the speed at which he works, this was still an impressive achievement, but as far as an informative biography of a fascinating person, it fails to achie ...more
Oct 07, 2013 Jacob added it
Recommended to Jacob by: Caustic Cover Critic
A very brief history. Stephen Hawking's autobiography is 126 pages long, and would have probably been less than a hundred without the many photographs included. However, considering that Hawking's maximum typing speed is 3-4 words per minute, we should be grateful he decided to spend the time to write this book.

The first half of My Brief History briefly goes into Hawking's early years (he was born exactly three hundred years after Galileo's death), family, education, career, first marriage, and
May 17, 2015 Brittany rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
This makes sense to me. Not the physics, that will never make sense to me. The physics are leagues beyond my comprehension. But, the heavy leaning on physics instead of personal detail does fit perfectly for what I know of Mr. Hawking. Which is not much more than what I knew before going into this book.

Ask a man who dedicated his life to finding the secrets of the universe and the meaning behind our existence to write a story of his life, what do you really expect to get? I was happy for the sm
Sarah AlObaid
Feb 05, 2017 Sarah AlObaid rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: on-my-bookshelf
This is a very straightforward, short recount of Stephen Hawking's life told by himself. It is beyond inspiring and it left me in complete awe for this man but it was not full of sentimental heartfelt chapters describing his endless struggles in life and his battle against his disability. On the contrary, this was mostly facts, facts, facts with the occasional pondering here and there. It was not at all difficult to read and only had scientific-talk when he described his accomplishments and the ...more
Stephen Hawking, one of the most famous physicists and researchers in cosmology in the world, tells the story of his life in this book. Did you know that he is self learned when it comes to maths? Or that he wasn't happy when his little sister was born? This book includes information that shows the man behind the success.

What made him interested in science and so successful? As a young boy, he was fascinated by systems and wanted to control them. He used to take apart items to see how they worke
Nov 20, 2013 BigJohn rated it liked it
Shelves: audio-books
I'm giving this a neutral 3-star rating. From the description of the book, I thought this would be a biographical telling of Stephen Hawking. Perhaps I misunderstood, but his biography probably makes up less than 50% of the entire book, which is quite brief.

It starts out well enough, beginning with his Great-Grandfather, and working up to his own birth during WWII. Then the accelerator is floored, as he zooms through childhood and into his college and post-doc years. From there, it's physics, ph
Jan 26, 2017 George rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Τι μπορεί να πει κανείς για τον Στίβεν Χόκινγκ; Ένα από τα πιο δυνατά μυαλά που έβγαλε η ανθρωπότητα, με την μοίρα όμως να του παίζει άσχημο παιχνίδι και να τον καθηλώνει σε ηλεκτρικό αναπηρικό καρότσι για πολλές δεκαετίες - μεταξύ άλλων προβλημάτων υγείας. Όμως ο ίδιος ο Χόκινγκ αισθάνεται σχετικά ικανοποιημένος από την ζωή του: Παντρεύτηκε, έκανε παιδιά, ταξίδεψε στον κόσμο και προσέφερε ένα κάρο πράγματα στην επιστήμη. Βέβαια η ζωή του θα ήταν σαφώς πιο άνετη και ευχάριστη, αν δεν είχε αυτό τ ...more
Jan 19, 2016 Elaine rated it really liked it
I have always been intrigued and fascinated by Stephen Hawking but knew very little about him, his work and his life. After seeing the movie, "The Theory of Everything" based on the book by his first wife Jane, I became even more interested and wanted to learn more. My Brief History is truly that. A very short, quick insight into the man and the scientist; touching briefly on his personal life and two marriages. It is a very small window we are given to look into this great man's life. There is ...more
Farnoosh Noroozi
[عنوان: تاریخچهی خودم
نویسنده: استیون هاوکینگ
مترجم: رامین رامبد
مشخصات نشر: تهران، مازیار، چاپ اول ۱۳۹۲، ۱۵۰ ص.]

من همیشه یک علاقهمند به علم بوده و هستم. خیلی وقت بود که تصمیم گرفتم بغیر از خوندن مجلات علمی و دیدن مستندات علمی، از لذت خوندن کتابهای علمی هم (بالاخص کیهان شناسی و نجوم) خودم رو بیبهره نذارم. ولی خب به دلیل ترس و غیره پشت گوش انداختم. تا اینکه چشمم به این کتاب خورد… اتوبیوگرافی همیشه یکی از ژانرهای موردعلاقهی من بوده و هست. پس چه بهتر که استارت رو با خوندن خاطرات و چالشهای یک نابغه علم
Roma Kukchishvili
Jan 12, 2017 Roma Kukchishvili rated it liked it
სტივენ ჰოკინგს მართლაც საინტერესო ბიოგრაფია აქვს. მიუხედავად იმ სირთულეებისა, რაც მას ცხოვრებაში შეხვდა, დღეს ჰოკინგი მეცნიერების დამსახურებული როკსტარია.
საინტერესოა მისი თეორია წარმოსახვითი დროის შესახებ. რა თქმა უნდა, მხოლოდ ამ წიგნით შეუძლებელია ჩაწვდე საკითხს, მაგრამ გარკვეულ წარმოდგენებს მაინც გვიქმნის. აქვე ვხვდებით თეორიას, რომლის მიხედვითაც სამყარო დახურულია ისევე, როგორც დედამიწის ზედაპირი. (სამხრეთ პოლუსის სამხრეთით აღარაფერი არ არის).
საკმაოდ catchy ფრაზაც ვიპოვე. "შავი ხვრელიდან რადი
Mohamed al-Jamri
Mar 13, 2016 Mohamed al-Jamri rated it liked it
هذا الكتاب قصير ولطيف يستعرض فيه العالم الشهير ستيفن هوكنج مسيرة حياته مع تركيز خاص على الجانب العلمي فيها حيث يطلعنا على جوانب قد تكون غائبة عن كثير منا. الفلم الذي تم عمله عن شخصية هذا العالم بعنوان نظرية كل شيء يعطي صورة أفضل عن الجانب العاطفي من حياته ولكنه يقصّر في الجانب العلمي، وهذه هي الثغرة التي يسدها هذا الكتاب.
Dec 08, 2013 Inaniel rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2013-readings
For me it was a nice read. But I would have liked more personal topics, less explanations of physical theories because Mr. Hawking seems to be an interesting and extraordinary human beeing even without his achievements in science, but this book did not deliver this.
Bogdan Teodorescu
Jan 30, 2017 Bogdan Teodorescu rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Very very good. Stephen Hawking's mind an way of writing a book is just genial. And after all he's been through, he still published this. All my respect
Sep 10, 2013 Kaethe rated it really liked it
For me one of the most appealing aspects of this book is its brevity. And that is not intended as any sort of dig at Hawking. Really, I want to learn a bit about him, but I don't want the messy details of anyone else's romantic life (and they are all messy). This is a bit about his parents, his childhood, his education (college was important to him), his marriages. his kids, his career, a bit about working around his disability. I don't feel like I know him, but I feel I've gotten a pretty good ...more
Mar 02, 2016 John rated it really liked it
Just as it says on the label, here's Hawking's short autobiography. It starts off like a conventional autobiography -- parents, childhood, schooling, university -- but then focuses as much on his work as it does on the events of his life. Bearing in mind that, for a theoretical scientist, life is defined to a great extent by the work, this seems an ideal balance to me.

If you want to spend an hour or two being introduced to what makes Hawking tick, this is the ideal book. I'm now quite tempted to
Dr. Ansh
Nov 05, 2013 Dr. Ansh rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
More of a technical autobiography. If you are expecting, details and anecdotes about Hawking's Motor Neuron disease and how he coped up with it, you would be disappointed. Hawking is plain, simple and not-at-all modest while penning down his towards being one of the most acclaimed scientist of recent times.
A must read if you are his fan and are familiar with concepts of theorerical physics and cosmology. Else, avoid.
Jan 09, 2016 Margaret rated it it was ok
It is not what one expects from a biography. Very little information about the man's personal life, his beliefs , his friends , his enemies, his relationships with children, relatives, students, the world! And too much science! But he already wrote about it in other books! So better watch the movie!
How does one review someone's life? It's probably one of the harder things to do, especially with such an icon as Stephen Hawking. I'll admit that I'm one of those people who has a copy of A Brief History of Time , but I haven't read it yet (I'm going to, I swear!).

My Brief History by Dr. Stephen Hawking is his personal memoir. For those who don't know who Stephen Hawking is, he is a theoretical physicist, cosmologist and the Director of Research at the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology at the U
Nov 12, 2013 Jill rated it it was ok
Some lives of scientists are incredibly interesting. Newton’s personal life is the source of endless debate and fascination, and there are whole cults devoted to the life of Richard Feynman. (Even Hawking recounts some amusing anecdotes told by Feynman.) So I had high expectations for hearing about the life of Stephen Hawking.

This memoir, however, struck me as uneven in quality. Some of it had too much detail given to the most quotidian events. For example, Hawking names every friend he ever pl
This is an autobiography of the famous physicist Stephen Hawking. He is one person who has probably inspired me the most in my life. His book “A brief history of time” made me fall in love with physics more than a decade back. So happy that I read this book finally about him and his research.

He talks about his childhood, his parents and siblings in the first few chapters. One interesting fact is that I could relate to his father a lot. His father sounded so much like my own father sometimes. The
Sep 18, 2013 Debbie rated it really liked it
Stephen Hawking: the man and the human being. It is extremely difficult to see Stephen Hawking as a person with love, fear and loneliness as things he possibly suffers through. In his autobiography we learn about Stephen’s life leading up to his grand successes and beyond. As a child he loved trains, was curious how machines worked, and was not skilled with his hands when rebuilding the machines he dissected.

Professor Hawking is revered for his “genius” in the theoretical physics realm and hea
Shiba Otimista
Uma autobiografia curta e simples escrita pelo próprio Stephen Hawking. Ele não é um escritor de carreira - faz mais divulgação científica - e tem suas dificuldades motoras, de forma que o livro não é nem muito elaborado e nem muito longo, mas foi muito satisfatório e inspirador.

Ele conta basicamente da vida desde a infância aos dias de hoje, dando ênfase especial para as teorias que desenvolveu. A importância que elas têm, aliás, mostram como ele valoriza a pesquisa e a ciência: eu queria saber
Sep 14, 2013 Nancy rated it really liked it
Stephen Hawking: A Brilliant and Playful Mind

Like most people, I view Stephen Hawking as a great scientists and as a determined individual who overcame a debilitating disease, ALS. In this book, he reveals himself as a witty and warm human being.

Hawking's parents were considered rather eccentric. They kept to themselves, but they cared about their children and devoted time to their development. I found Hawking's memories of his childhood illuminating. His fascination with machines and how they
Nov 01, 2013 Charbel rated it really liked it
Shelves: science, biographies
My Brief History is written with care and objectivity (as much as you can get from an autobiography), yet Hawking's personality still manages to impose itself through the quality of the words. It is this personality that makes this book such as wonderful read.

The reader gets a peak into Hawking's past, his family history, and his educational and scientific career. And for those nosy readers (and I am one of them, for it is only natural to be nosy in this case) he talks about his disease, its d
May 16, 2016 Pupilla rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: in-hungarian, 2016
Az élettörténet, a humor tetszett, a fizikája azonban még ennek is nagyon magas számomra. Emiatt megkérdőjelezem, hogy érdemes-e egyáltalán belevágni Az idő rövid történetébe? Cauchy-horizont, kozmikus húrok... huhh.
Hawking mindenesetre az egyik legnagyobb élő elme, és csodával határos, hogy egyáltalán köztünk van.
Oct 10, 2014 Marty rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was quite the quick read and my first book of science that I have read.

Stephen Hawkins is one of the smartest men of my time and I greatly appreciate my love of Star Trek even more as most of the dialogue used in the shows are derived from current knowledge of cosmology which the study of the science an development of the universe.

Very good read and knowledge builder.
Paljon odottamaani enemmän fysiikan teorioita ja niiden kehitystä, osa meni ohi ja kovaa mutta joukosta löytyi mielenkiintoisiakin. Kaiken teoria -leffan nähneenä oli mielenkiintoista seurata, kuinka Hawkingin elämän tapahtumat hänen omakertomanaan eroavat leffaversiosta.
Jose Monarrez
Nov 25, 2016 Jose Monarrez rated it really liked it
4 concisa y muy clara... que mas se puede pedir de una mente bien estructurada

En lugar de una review esta pretende ser una pequeña reflexión (muy personal) sobre la obra de Hawking, porque siendo sinceros, ¿cómo puedes hacer una review de una autobiografía? el es el único que puede valorar lo que es importante sobre su propia vida.

Al ver la obra de Stephen Hawking, en lo referente a divulgación científica, dos cosas me llaman la atención, la primera es en lo referente al grosor de sus libros. Au
Barbara Brown
Mar 02, 2014 Barbara Brown rated it did not like it
I have not read many biographies. Not because I dislike them, but because it is a genre I just don’t think about very often. I usually read for entertainment, a brief escape from reality and stress. Some people watch TV, I read. That being said, I prefer fictional literary adventure over “cinematic” adventure because movies and television always strikes me as lacking in some dimension. In movies and television you lose hefty chunks of the story for the sake of brevity, you miss the thoughts of t ...more
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Stephen William Hawking was born on 8 January 1942 in Oxford, England. His parents' house was in north London, but during the second world war Oxford was considered a safer place to have babies. When he was eight, his family moved to St Albans, a town about 20 miles north of London. At eleven Stephen went to St Albans School, and then on to University College, Oxford, his father's old college. Ste ...more
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“If you understand how the universe operates, you control it, in a way.” 5 likes
“The microwave background indicated that the universe had had a hot, dense stage in the past.” 0 likes
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