Textbooks and other Readings for
Big Bang and Black Holes
(ASTR/PHYS 109, Fall 2021)

For students in ASTR/PHYS 109 at Texas A&M University, there are a number of Required and Recommended texts for the course.

There are a number of ways to get a textbook, or deal with it if you can't get it right away. If you can't get a textbook before assignments are due, see the information at the bottom of this page

Required Textbook (Be sure to get the right edition!):

1.      Big Bang, Black Holes, No Math (David Toback, 2013), or cheaper directly from the publisher in either Printed or eBook format

o        This is the primary text for the course

o        Note: There is a copy of all the textbooks (Required and Recommended) on Reserve at Evans Library, or if this is the beginning of the semester you download the first four chapters here while you get your book

o        If you want, you can order it directly, or get an eBook version, from here. It is available on Amazon, but check to see if the price is better.

Recommended (not required) Reading (Be sure to get the right edition!):

1.      A Briefer History of Time (Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow, 2008)

o        Note that this is different from (and MUCH better than) the older version, A Brief History of Time

2.      The Science of Interstellar (Kip Thorne 2014)   

3.      Stephen Hawking's Universe: The Cosmos Explained (David Filkin, 1997)   

o        This is the authorized companion to the Public Television Series

o        There is a DVD, but its really different than the book and not very useful for us

o        You should be able to get this in paperback, with all the glossy pictures

4.      The First Three Minutes (Steven Weinberg, 1993)

o        Be sure to get the edition from 1993, not from 1988

o        You should be able to get this in paperback cheaply

5.      Theory of Everything: The Origin and Fate of the Universe (Stephen Hawking, 2007)

o        You should be able to get this in paperback cheaply as well

    If you can't get the textbooks at the bookstore, you can certainly get them all used online

Other Readings you will need to download:

  1. Cosmology in the 21st Century Taken from Chapter 18 of "Foundations of Astronomy" by Seeds, 9th edition.  Warning: It's ~50Mb

Q: I don't have my copy of the textbook yet. What can I do?
A: There are many ways to get a copy of the textbook
  1. The textbook can be found at the bookstore. Send email to 109help@physics.tamu.edu if they are out.
  2. You can get a eBook version very quickly here
  3. You can order the book directly from the company and they tend to deliver most quickly.
  4. I have placed a copy on Reserve at the Library. Send email to 109help@physics.tamu.edu if not and we'll get it fixed.
  5. As a final option for the beginning of the semester, I have posted a link to the first 4 chapters here

Created by Dave Toback (toback@tamu.edu)
(Last updated by Dave Toback on  08/26/21)

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