"You can take these science books to the beach...For a look today at the science you'll be reading about in the next two years, you could curl up with The Lightness of Being: Mass, Ether, and the Unification of Forces (Basic Books, $26.95) by Frank Wilczek, the 2004 Nobel Prize winner in physics...Don't worry, the chapters are short, fun and larded with historical points that offer readers the payoff of understanding all the excitement in the scientific world over Europe's Large Hadron Collider, just getting warmed up in its operations...
One of the most skeptical physicists around when it comes to new theories, Wilczek feels optimistic that a flurry of new particles will be uncovered at the Swiss-French atom-smasher in the next few years, re-invigorating particle physics. 'I think science has a lot to offer the world,' he says. 'And we'll see some glorious results in months, not decades.'
With promises like that, we can look forward to reading lots more science books at the beach in summers to come as well."
-- Dan Vergano, writing in USA Today, August 4, 2008.
"Want to know what it's all about? Here's a book that candidly tells you what 'it' is. And just about everything you thought about 'it' is wrong. Accessible, charming and cheeky, The Lightness of Being reveals a universe where matter is the hum of strange music, mass doesn't weigh, and empty space is a multilayered, multicolored superconductor."
-- K.C. Cole, author of Mind Over Matter: Conversations with the Cosmos
"Vintage Wilczek -- fun, simple and right."
-- Robert Laughlin, author of A Different Universe and The Crime of Reason
"This book is deep, simple and incredibly well-written. Starting from the nature of mass, Professor Wilczek leads the reader to an understanding of the most profound ideas and accomplishments in physics today."
-- T. D. Lee, Nobel Laureate in Physics, Columbia University
"The Lightness of Being is a delightful celebration of the wonders of physics, told by one who has helped define the current frontiers. Wilczek's lightness of touch and wry humour make this book a joy to read."
-- Frank Close, author of The Void
"The Lightness of Being takes the reader on a mind-stretching journey, providing a revolutionary new vision of the universe. Frank Wilczek is an extraordinarily accomplished and creative scientist who has the rare ability to communicate scientific ideas and insights with exceptional clarity -- but also with a delightful playfulness."
-- Jerome I. Friedman, Nobel Laureate, MIT
"The Lightness of Being is a lively, playful, and inventive tour de force, written by a lively, playful, and inventive key mover in the field. Few creative popular expositors of physics are also brilliant physicists. It is rarer still to find a creative expositor of physics who is not only brilliant but has personally helped change the way we think about nature."
-- Lawrence Krauss, author of Hiding in the Mirror: The Mysterious Allure of Extra Dimensions
"Frank Wilczek takes readers on an enjoyable and enlightening voyage that starts with the deep insights that won him a Nobel Prize, and moves on to the more speculative realms that physicists are now investigating. This is a colorful and masterful treatment of recent developments in fundamental physics."
-- Peter Woit, author of Not Even Wrong