The ‘wondrous mysteries of science’ explored fall largely within the realms of physics and astronomy, geology, and plant and animal biology; the choices of topic feel a little obscure, but that just adds to the chances that you won’t have come across it all before.
|Artist Alex Eben Meyer's piece for "Why do pigeons bob their heads when they walk?"|
The science is only half the fun of the book, however. The illustrations accompanying each mini essay range from the literal to the very obtuse, and whilst the scientific themes occasionally overlap, each piece of art, be it modern print, comic strip, cartoon or traditional Japanese style, playfully captures some essence of the problem being discussed. It’s just as much fun trying to get inside the mind of the artists as much as the scientists and if ever the artwork is released as full-size I will certainly be the first in the queue to snap them up.
Whilst some phenomena, such as with the pigeon, are on the verge of being explained by scientists, many of the answers lie on the exciting (and frustrating, if you’re the research scientist) ‘we have no idea’-end of the scientific knowledge scale.
|Artist Lauren Nassef's illustration of "What is the origin of the moon?"|
The Where, the Why, and the How is one of the most accessible, and definitely one of the prettiest, science books that I’ve read in a good long while.