Ein­stein’s Mon­sters: The Life and Times of Black Holes

THE (Times Higher Education) - - BOOKS -

Chris Im­pey

Nor­ton

Black holes, says Chris Im­pey, are “the best known and least un­der­stood ob­jects in the uni­verse”. De­spite be­ing “co-opted by pop cul­ture”, they are not “cos­mic vac­uum clean­ers”, and we re­ally don’t need to worry too much about them – the near­est ex­am­ples are sev­eral hun­dred tril­lion miles away. Yet de­spite the reser­va­tions of many physi­cists, they cer­tainly ex­ist – even if, as Im­pey puts it, “there are only about three dozen stel­lar corpses proven to be black holes beyond rea­son­able doubt”. Ein­stein’s Mon­sters cuts through the “fiendishly com­plex” math­e­mat­ics to set out the ev­i­dence for black holes, and how they are born and die.

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