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Following the successful Lost to Time comes this fascinating companion volume on science from bestselling author Kitty Ferguson. Acclaimed popular science writer Kitty Ferguson investigates little-explored byroads in the history of science, from Johannes Kepler’s nearly disastrous venture into the realm of science fiction to a mid-twentieth-century experiment involving cats and rocket fuel. She introduces such underappreciated geniuses as Mary the Jewess, first-century ancestress of modern chemistry, and Lise Meitner, whose role in the discovery of nuclear fission the Nobel committee ignored, and takes us on astounding adventures with the likes of Jesuit astronomer Ferdinand Verbiest, who invented the first automobile and saved his own life by winning a bizarre astronomy competition in seventeenth-century China against his former torturer.
Kitty Ferguson has been writing and lecturing about science and scientists for over two decades, making the language and concepts of physics and cosmology understandable for a wide range of readers. Her 1991 biography Stephen Hawking: Quest for the Theory of Everything (Random House) was written with Hawking’s encouragement and help and was an international bestseller. She also was a consultant for Hawking’s book The Universe in a Nutshell (Random House). Kitty is the author of eight books, including Tycho and Kepler and The Music of Pythagoras (both Walker). She has been interviewed by Forbes Magazine, PBS’ Fresh Airwith Terry Gross, the News Hour with Jim Lehrer, and the BBC. She lectures widely in North America and Europe, and her appearances have included the Goddard Space Flight Center, the Hayden Planetarium in NYC, the Nobel Peace Prize Forum, and many universities. Kitty and her husband divide their time between Cambridge, England, and SC.