Of the books I read published in 2012, these are my favorites.

You have probably seen many of these lists, from the New York Times Ten Best Books of 2012 to the Millions’ Year in Reading series. (Both are highly recommended, by the way.) Not that my opinion is terribly important, but I thought I would contribute to the lists, as well, if nothing else because I read […]

Immortality and the Jellyfish.

Nathaniel Rich, in The New York Times: After more than 4,000 years — almost since the dawn of recorded time, when Utnapishtim told Gilgamesh that the secret to immortality lay in a coral found on the ocean floor — man finally discovered eternal life in 1988. The form of that discovery was, as the title of […]

I Know I Will Die, But I Will Live Forever: Stephen Cave’s “Immortality.”

We all know we will die, yet we cannot possibly comprehend it: an inevitability that cannot possibly be inevitable. This is the “Mortality Paradox,” and, according to Stephen Cave’s fantastic short book, Immortality, it underlies everything—from art to biology to civilization itself. Cave, a PhD in metaphysics and a former diplomat for the British Foreign Service, structures […]