Feature Physics Space

Astro Katie has a new book. Here’s everything we know.

Katie Mack's The End of Everything coming this August

Astrophysicist KATIE MACK, who I’ve become very familiar with from her amusing and educational Twitter feed (@AstroKatie), will become book-mom to a beautiful hardcover very soon. I didn’t even realize that I was long awaiting the day Dr. Mack would write a book until it became a reality. Here’s everything we know.

It has a cheery title.

The book is titled The End of Everything: (Astrophysically Speaking). Here, she wades through the mathematics of astrophysics (so that we don’t have to) and hopefully brings us to some kind of humble state of cosmic vertigo.

It’s full of spoilers.

It is, as you can probably guess, about the ultimate cosmic demise. In fact, it’s about five demises. Katie Mack unpacks the five most likely endings to the universe, ensuring that even if she’s wrong four times, she’ll almost certainly have spoiled the ending for us in one of these theories:

  • The Big Crunch
  • The Heat Death
  • Vacuum Decay
  • The Big Rip
  • The Bounce

The study of End Times in theology is known as “eschatology.” This book provides, in a way, five secular and epic eschatologies.

You do not need to have studied science to understand this book.

One of Dr. Mack’s fortes, in addition to being a stellar scientist, is being a science communicator. She makes the most mind-bending and counter-intuitive ideas that come out of physics clear and digestible for the casually curious, like me.

Mack is a phenomenologist. That is, she’s a theorist who who finds creative new ways to connect the things the theorists’ hypotheses to the experimentalists’ capabilities to look for evidence in the real world. Who better to translate the language of science than someone who’s used to living between worlds?

It is so far well received.

The End of Everything has already received the coveted star review from booksellers’ and librarians’ trade magazine Publishers Weekly, as well as a positive review from Kirkus, who is notorious for speaking their mind even when they don’t like a book. It has a solid 4 stars on Goodreads. (Go shelf that puppy if you haven’t already.)

Library Journal says, “anyone wondering what to read after Brian Greene’s Until the End of Time will relish this blend of wit and deep thought.” This is true. Greene’s book came out earlier this year and everyone’s read it. Do you really need another book about the end of the universe? A RESOUNDING YES.

You can own it on August 4th.

The End of Everything is being published on August 4, 2020, by Scribner (Simon & Schuster). It is available for sale everywhere books are sold, including your local independent bookstore, who you should definitely support right now. It will be available on this date in hardcover, e-book, digital audiobook, and audiobook CDs. BUY NOW.

You can get bonus items for pre-ordering.

Is it better to order a book when it goes on sale or to pre-order it in advance? You may not realize, but pre-ordering a book is one of the most helpful things you can do for an author that you like. Pre-orders show retailers how much demand there is for a book, which can affect order numbers and even print runs. It also can help get the book onto the bestseller list in the first week, which will create momentum for weeks to come.

You can also get bonus treats for pre-ordering. In the case of The End of Everything, by submitted your proof of purchase (your receipt), you get a book plate autographed by the author. You also get to ask Katie Mack a question for her on-sale day video. If your question gets picked, you get a cool themed pin. Check it out.


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