Nobody needs another listicle of best podcasts out there. But today, I bring you the top science podcasts written by authors. It wouldn’t be a book club without a few book recommendations! Enjoy.
From Festival of the Spoken Nerd trio Matt Parker, Steve Mould, and Helen Arney comes a tightly edited half hour show of the witty banter that you’ll expect if you’ve ever seen their live shows. To give you an idea, in the first episode, you’ll be astonished to know how decaf coffee is made, you’ll be confused as to how the coal layer was formed, and you’ll be hesitant next time you board a plane in Canada. (For more mathematical mishaps involving planes and other things, check out Parker’s book Humble Pi.) Plus a Helen Arney original song about the sun (with input from 15 Million Degrees author Lucie Green) to round out the episode. More nerdy fun awaits in the episodes that follow!
Podcasts that Are Also Books
The podcast version of CBC Radio One’s Quirks & Quarks has been around for something like 27 years, the radio show dating even longer (40 years!). Host Bob McDonald discusses the latest in science, technology, medicine and the environment news. The show has its own series of books, always with an introduction by Bob McDonald.
More podcasts by authors
The podcast version of BBC Radio 4’s Inside Science with geneticist Adam Rutherford is an all time favorite of mine. Rutherford talks about the big science news and breakthroughs of the week and interviews scientists about their current areas of research. Great for anyone who has a broad interest in all areas of science.
Adam Rutherford’s books:
More than a hundred episodes in, physicist and prolific author Sean Carroll interviews today’s biggest thinkers. Recent episodes have discussed viruses, self-driving cars, evolution, quantum gravity, bears, dark matter, and so much more.
Some of Sean Carroll’s books:
Bill Nye the Science Guy is answering real questions from real listeners. Listeners can write in with their questions on his website, and he and his guests discuss the topic. Recent episodes have been very Coronavirus question heavy but have also tackled questions about dinosaur extinction and bears.
Bill Nye’s Books:
NPR’s science show Invisibilia is hosted by Alix Spiegel and Hanna Rosin and Radiolab’s Lulu Miller, though not always all three together. NPR’s description covers it all: Unseeable forces control human behavior and shape our ideas, beliefs, and assumptions. Invisibilia—Latin for invisible things—fuses narrative storytelling with science that will make you see your own life differently.
Books by the hosts:
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