The Body

The Body

A Guide for Occupants

Book - 2019
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"Bill Bryson, bestselling author of A short history of nearly everything, takes us on a head-to-toe tour of the marvel that is the human body. As compulsively readable as it is comprehensive, this is Bryson at his very best, a must-read owner's manual for everybody. Bill Bryson once again proves himself to be an incomparable companion as he guides us through the human body--how it functions, its remarkable ability to heal itself, and (unfortunately) the ways it can fail. Full of extraordinary facts (your body made a million red blood cells since you started reading this) and irresistible Bryson-esque anecdotes, [this book] will lead you to a deeper understanding of the miracle that is life in general and you in particular. As Bill Bryson writes, 'We pass our existence within this wobble of flesh and yet take it almost entirely for granted.' [This book] will cure that indifference with generous doses of wondrous, compulsively readable facts and information."--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Doubleday, 2019
Edition: First United States edition
ISBN: 9780385539302
Branch Call Number: QM23.2 .B79 2019
612 Bryson
Characteristics: x, 450 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations (some color) ; 25 cm


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Feb 01, 2021

While the book is interesting, it has mistakes - for instance, Bryson states all geckos are female and reproduce asexually, essentially being clones of the mother. This is not the case. There is a species that reproduces asexually, but not all species of geckos are female, and not all reproduce asexually. As well, he states type O blood is universal, but only O negative is universal. If O positive were universal we'd be laughing because it is so common, and everyone would be able to use it.

As well, the book is already out of date when it comes to the spread of viruses. (I suppose we have to expect that scientific information can quickly become out of date.) Bryson argues that viruses are spread much more readily through surfaces rather than air. Covid-19 has changed that conclusion.

Feb 01, 2021

great story teller

Jan 02, 2021

KC Dyer's fave of 2020

Aug 07, 2020

Jeopardy can do many shows on numerous answer-and-question trivia under science/biology/human-body topics. There are 23 chapters and the final two, "Medicine Good and Bad" and "The End", are also thought provoking with social insights.

Note: of the many photographs of medical pioneers, only one is a woman - Nettie Stevens, who, while studying the reproductive organs of mealworms in Pennsylvania in 1905, discovered the Y chromosome.

May 15, 2020

This is typical Bill Bryson. If you are the type to read a book full of facts then you are sure to like this. Each chapter focuses on a different section or system of the body and Bryson gives you more factual and fun tidbits than you will ever remember. It was really interesting and very readable and I would definitely recommend it to people who enjoy this type of thing.

DCPL_JohnB Mar 23, 2020

A compelling look at the human body and how it works (and sometimes doesn't). Bryson fills each page with eye-opening revelations, approaching his subject with reverent curiosity. Yet a light-heartedness sparks up, here and there. Frequent asides into the lives of scientists and key figures shed light on history's unsung heroes and curiosities.

Mar 05, 2020

Lovely book, informative and funny. For me, was a fast read as I loved biology and anatomy in college. But anyone can benefit from diving into it. You'll love your skin, your thymus, and even your feet even more than you do now.

JCLS_Ashland_Kristin Mar 03, 2020

Informative and super readable. There is a lot of content about diseases, which makes now a fascinating time to be reading it!

Mar 01, 2020

A broad and quite basic overview. Easy and quick read, slightly entertaining and well researched - but not mind blowing. Those who are more than a little interested in health or general biology are unlikely to learn anything new here. It barely touches the surface on most topics. A few things are taken out of context... which I suppose is to be expected when the approach is so basic and mostly based on trivia. A good primer for adults who may have never taken biology and/or are new to health awareness.

Feb 22, 2020

Somewhere between "At Home" and "A Short History of Nearly Everything" this book dives deeply and effortlessly when warranted. Other time it moves along quickly. Bryson does not come across as a curmudgeon like he did in his last book (Little Dibbling). I have requested the audio for The Body from the library and look forward to listening to it on long runs this spring and summer.

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Aug 07, 2020

176 quotes already posted in goodreads and I understand the readers' interest. There are tons of information, statistics and unusual trivia:

Jun 30, 2020

"Your brain is you. Everything else is just plumbing and scaffolding." p 49


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