Of Particular Significance

The Impossible Cover

POSTED BY Matt Strassler

POSTED BY Matt Strassler

ON 09/14/2023

Waves in an Impossible Sea, on the intersection of modern physics with human existence and daily life, is essentially done and edited now — not perfect, of course, but as good as I have had time to make it. Now I await the proofs.

The book is supposed to appear in early March. Here’s the cover art, created by an artist at the publisher, Basic Books. I hope it makes you curious about what might lie inside!

A Harvard physicist takes us on an awe-inspiring journey from relativity to the Higgs field, showing how the universe creates everything from what seems like nothing at all 

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23 Responses

    1. Oh, gosh, I don’t have the hubris to claim to compete with Venus! Let’s hope my book does not engender a new Trojan war… though a friend did ask whether the impossible sea is wine-dark, and I replied “yes, impossibly so.”

  1. I can see a lot of thought has gone into the look and text to entice the curious, educated general public, in addition to your main STEM audience. “How everyday life emerges from the cosmic ocean” comes across to me as profoundly startling and to the point.

    1. Thanks; I’m glad it comes across in that way. Yes, I tried to write this so that it would offer a great deal to the general public *and* to STEM-educated readers. It’s intended to provide a foundational understanding of how to think about the world from a modern physics perspective.

  2. Finally! Can’t wait to add it to my collection.

    BTW: I have just the perfect soundtrack for you documentary version of the book.

    “1/4 What The Universe Tells Me (GREAT Documentary on Mahler’s 3rd Symphony)” – Youtube

    All 4 parts of this masterpiece, of course.

    PS: “… how the universe creates everything from what seems like nothing at all.”

    Well, I’ll keep pushing my theory until proven wrong. This “nothing” is basically “space”, the vaccuum (the aether). The prerequist is that the universe is closed, a spherical bubble of “nothing”. That’s all that is required since no two points within this bubble will have the same density and hence velocities. Lorentz transformations at the fundamental scale. Could this thoery forever be hidden below Planck’s scale?

    Is the book sold in Canada?

  3. Great. Congratulations Matt. I suppose it will be available through Amazon,. Can we can buy it directly from you?

  4. Nice cover, Matt, simple but striking. I think the title and sub-title are likely to attract bookstore/ebook browsers, intrigued by the idea of the ‘intersection’ of physics with Life. In your hands I know this will not be just a glib come-on, but absolutely relevant to current anxieties about Truth and Reality. Good luck with publication – I can’t wait to read it!

    1. Glad you like it! I was pleased with it, too. The title was my invention (one of many that I proposed) and I think the publisher really did choose the best among the options.

  5. Your publisher did you proud. With a few good “quotes” for the back and you should do very well. I know I will definitely be on the lookout for it! Thanks as always for your wonderful posts.

    1. Glad you like it! I’ll pass along the positive reviews. I think you’ll like the flap pretty well too. Blurbs for the back are still to come — and then there’s the matter of reviews, by readers and by influencers. Hoping for the best!

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A decay of a Higgs boson, as reconstructed by the CMS experiment at the LHC


A quick reminder, to those in the northwest’s big cities, that I will be giving two talks about my book in the next 48 hours:

POSTED BY Matt Strassler

POSTED BY Matt Strassler

ON 04/17/2024

A reminder: tonight (April 3) at 6pm I’ll be giving a public lecture about my book, along with a Q&A in conversation with Greg Kestin,

POSTED BY Matt Strassler

POSTED BY Matt Strassler

ON 04/03/2024