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Book Review:
The Living Cosmos: Our Search For Life In The Universe
by Chris Impey

Reviewed by David Ocame, WS1ETI, Argus Station FN31og
email: docame_at_sbcglobal_dot_net

At the outset, I have to state it was very difficult for me to read this book. Not because it was incomprehensible. From the back cover of the dust jacket Kirkus Reviews is quoted describing the book as "Lively, clear and up-to-date...a skillful account of the universe, the nature of life and where in the universe life might occur." I found it to be mostly clear, certainly up to date, but there was nothing new said. In fact, it read just like a number of similarly fashionable tomes on astrobiology that had already been written and published. It failed to hold my attention. As a matter of fact, I read the first few chapters in depth and then found myself skimming the rest looking for something of note. I came up short.

I do want to make clear that it's not a "bad" book. In fact, it is good, at some level. However, I would not recommend this for someone who is already somewhat familiar with the literature. I would find value in keeping it around to loan, or give, to an intermediate level reader - say middle to late high school age. Students who are unfamiliar with the history of astrobiology. Indeed, I find the discussions to be, for the most part, insufficiently in-depth to be satisfying to the advanced reader.

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