Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson Shares His Reading Recommendations

Posted by Cybil on November 22, 2019
For more than a decade, Neil deGrasse Tyson, the world-renowned astrophysicist and host of the popular radio and Emmy-nominated television show StarTalk, has attracted a massive online following with his insights into the cosmos.

In 2017, his book Astrophysics for People in a Hurry rocketed to the top of the New York Times bestseller list, where it remained for more than a year. The book also earned the Goodreads Choice Award for best science and technology book.

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His new book, Letters from an Astrophysicist, is a companion volume to that 2017 bestseller. In it, Tyson shares his correspondence with people from around the globe who have sought his perspective on questions about science, faith, philosophy, and (of course) Pluto.

Exploring two decades’ worth of letters and emails with his readers and listeners, Tyson has handpicked one hundred and one examples that address the topics most frequently crossing his desk: the possibility of parallel universes, the questionable morality of killing an alien being, the legitimacy of research into psychic teleportation, and even the likelihood of Bigfoot’s existence.

In light of the new book which highlights the curiosity of the astrophysicist's fans, we wondered what science books he's fascinated by, and what he'd recommend for fellow science buffs. Below you'll find some of his recent picks.

Be sure to add the books that pique your interest to your Want to Read shelf.




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“Delighted to learn that, in spite of the violence duly reported in this world, over the centuries we have actually become a kinder and gentler species.”


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“Richard Dawkins is one of my intellectual heroes. Why wouldn’t I want to know his origin story?”


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“Always good to read up on the cultural influences of scientists whose work I’ve only known from their research publications.”


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“I will continue to decline invitations to write a picture book for children until the day arises when I can write something better than this. At the moment, that still looks like never.”



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“Just released so I haven’t read it yet, but it’s on my list. Real science, real crimes, real space!”


What science-related book would you recommend to your fellow readers? Let's talk books in the comments!

Check out more recent articles:
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32 Short (and New) Books to Help You Crush Your 2019 Reading Challenge
Goodreads Staffers Recommend Their Favorite Audiobooks

Comments Showing 1-8 of 8 (8 new)

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The Masked Reader All these recommendations sound good, but quantum sounds honestly awesome. Can’t wait to try!


message 2: by Kaitlynn (new)

Kaitlynn Pinker doesn't deserve to be on that list but okay.


Thegioigachlatsan All these recommendations sound good, but quantum sounds honestly awesome. Can’t wait to try tks you . tile - Gạch Lát Nền


message 4: by Connor (new)

Connor How many times is he going to have to be accused of being a creep before interviewers stop asking him about anything other than all the women who think he’s a creep?


message 5: by Denise (new)

Denise Gill I agree with Connor.


message 6: by Nullifidian (new)

Nullifidian It's kind of disappointing that none of these books are focused on improving readers' scientific literacy. Pinker's book is a work of social science at best, Dawkins' is an autobiography, Wulf's is a biography, and Cornwell's is a forthcoming novel. This was a missed opportunity to present books that were more directly relevant to specific scientific topics.


message 7: by John (new)

John Mccullough I have many "favorites." "The Double Helix" by James Watson is an easy one describing one of the greatest biological discoveries AND the dead ends that were chased along with the logic that eventually lead them to the discovery.


message 8: by Chris (new)

Chris I liked Brief Answers to the Big Questions by Stephen hawking, Richard Dawkins' The Magic of Reality, and Astrophysics for People in a Hurry.


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