James Kennedy

Epic cross-section of all of human culture. Fact-dense.
680 pages, ★★★★★

It’s so hot in Australia right now. The sun melted my chocolate yesterday. Today, my trusty iPod displayed the word “Temperature” instead of a map, before promptly shutting itself down in the car.

Chasing the Sun was thus a very apt book choice. It dances through science, but weaves in a lot of culture as well. British doors have sunrise-shaped windows. The Statue of Liberty wears a sun-shaped hat. Images as diverse as Jesus, Charlie Chaplin and Chairman Mao have all personified the sun in some way to imply power (be it spiritual, comical or political). Twenty countries currently have suns in their flags, and even the swastika was originally a line-drawn representation of the sun! According to Google Music, 2,500 copyrighted songs have been written about the sun (how many can you think of?), and nearly 500…

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