Press Release: Australia’s “Most Loved” Science Book

The Royal Institution of Australia has issued a press release announcing the winner of the “Favorite Science Book” poll.

“Australia’s most popular science book has been revealed. The most-loved title is The Philosophical Breakfast Club: Four Remarkable Friends Who Transformed Science and Changed the World by Laura J. Snyder.

“The Royal Institution of Australia (RiAus) opened its poll on 3 July 2011 in the lead up to the Great Big Science Read, held in August each year as part of National Science Week. Readers were asked to submit and vote for their favourite science-related titles, either fiction or non-fiction. Books by both local and international authors were accepted.

“’August is the month of the Great Big Science Read and we wanted to find out which book is the most popular book in Australia. And the crowd told us!’ said Petra Dzurovcinova, Digital Communications Manager for RiAus. Titles were voted on each week, with the least popular eliminated. Fans were kept up to date on the remaining titles on Facebook, Twitter and via the RiAus enewsletter.

“From almost 100 books, Laura J. Snyder’s four-part biography of a group of 19th century scientists was voted as the favourite science book. Snyder is a writer, professor and expert in Victorian science history and philosophy.

“’The beauty of this book is in the way we are introduced to four amazing scientists,’ said science fan and RiAus blogger Rosalie Wodecki. ‘It was deep enough that I feel I know them, but with enough mystery that I wish to know more’, she said.

“A solid mix of fiction and non-fiction books were represented among the winning titles, with The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams placed second and A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson, third.”

See the rest of the press release here.

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2 Responses to “Press Release: Australia’s “Most Loved” Science Book”


  1. 1 Jon at Science Book Express August 9, 2011 at 7:47 pm

    Though a stalwart for most sci-fi geeks, “The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy” is always winning the #1 spot. Not that it shouldn’t, but it would be more exciting to see newer titles get to #1.

  2. 2 Laura J. Snyder August 9, 2011 at 8:27 pm

    I’m enough of a sci-fi geek to love “The Hitchhikers Guide…”–but I too am happy that, this time, a new book got the number 1 spot 🙂


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About the Author











Laura J. Snyder, Ph.D., is a science historian, philosopher and writer whose most recent book, The Philosophical Breakfast Club: Four Remarkable Friends who Transformed Science and Changed the World, was an Official Selection of the TED Book Club, a Scientific American Notable Book, and winner of the 2011 Royal Institution of Australia Poll for Favorite Science Book. It was also named an "Outstanding Academic Title" in history of science and technology by the American Library Association. Snyder is Professor of Philosophy at St. John's University in New York City and writes frequently about science and ideas for The Wall Street Journal. She is a Fulbright Scholar, a Life Member of Clare Hall College, Cambridge, and Past President of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science.

 She is currently working on a book about how new optical technologies in the 17th century revolutionized not only science, but also art and the rest of culture. Follow Laura Snyder on Twitter and Facebook.

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