The Origin of Species – Charles Darwin.
I have read about 175+ books in last two years and not exaggerating that almost every tenth book mentions either Darwin’s theory or the book in question one way or the other. So much so that I was very curious for almost last two years to pick it up myself and read what actually he had written way back in 1859. I was shocked the way it gets mention not only in Non Fiction (mostly), but also in Fiction and even in a love story (Imagine it gets mentioned in a Jojo Moyes book too). But when I read Yuval Noah Harari’s (Sapiens) and followed it with a book written way back in 60’s about a court case where they debated over Bible Vs Darwin, it was simply too much for me to resist it anymore :). And then, my favorite Dan Brown came out with his new book called “Origin” exploring “Where do we come from” and “Where are we going”. Curiosity actually killed the cat and I picked it up some 15 days ago, mind it, it isn’t an easy read like any other book but way too interesting. Specially if you have any interest in “Origin”, History, Geography, Biology and even Science, this is a must must read. Even if those subjects do not interest someone, it can be read for its literary merit too, I totally loved it. Although after reading I can claim that this book is actually a summary of his findings and these 700 pages are way too short to explain everything, going by his writing I am doubly sure that the actual theory must not be any less than 10000 pages for sure as he mentioned at so many places that he wasn’t going in great details due to space constraints. On top of it, his findings weren’t finished by the time he started writing this and as his health wasn’t too good, his good friends and colleagues forced him to come out with this. Unbelievable that is to know and surprising is the entire book.
I had no idea before reading the book that what I was getting into, this isn’t just a book or a theory given by the great Charles Darwin but an encyclopedia of his theories about the origin of life on planet earth. How everything came to be and moved from one place to another, mind-blowing is his research, theory and conclusions which he kept open to debate with people and imagine even after 150 years, we are still debating on it. I just couldn’t imagine what kind of Lab he must have at that time and how far and wide he must have traveled to gather the data he has put in his theory, unbelievable. Another fantastic thing about Darwin was, not once he was afraid of giving credit to so many of his colleagues, eminent scientists and professors as he kept mentioning their names with what they thought and how it helped him to come to the conclusions that he had drawn, simply too good. Starting from the bacteria’s to germs to insects, birds, animals, humans and even dinosaurs, he hasn’t left anything which doesn’t gets a detailed mention in this book. I really wonder how deep and terrific would be his actual detailed findings which may not be available for us lesser mortals but the scientific community must have access to those works. Although those details may not make any sense to us unscientific and god fearing people, but he was always open to other parallel theories too and never made fun of them.
The way it covers the Human Origin timeline and the life on planet earth is just superb. Darwin was sure that no one can predict the exact time how long life has been here on this planet (at that time). The way he calculates the life as well as what data do we have in our hands as of now a mere negligible that we haven’t yet explored an iota of what is actually there on this planet is simply mind-blowing and convincing too. This will now be one book that I am going to force every teenager that I know to read without fail, more than for sure Blyton’s and Dahl’s. Its an amazing encyclopedia on Darwinism that everyone should read. I am glad and sad both to have read a Kindle version of the book. Glad that I could actually access the meanings immediately by tapping on the terms that I had never previously heard and sad that it didn’t had any of the diagrams that he made which should be available on a paperback :(. Also, now, I guess I have to go ahead and read Yuval Noah Harari’s “Homo Deus” which takes it all to couple of steps ahead where Darwin left it. Surprisingly when I bought this book (almost a year ago) it was absolutely free on Amazon (for Kindle).
If you have read this, do let me know how you like it, if not, you’ve got to read this without fail. This will now-onward be one of my all time favorite Non-Fiction for sure. A very highly recommended back for all.