LONDON – Stephen Hawking was a prolific author with a knack for making books on challenging scientific topics engaging to a wide spectrum of readers.
The physicist is best known for his best-selling 1988 classic "A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes," which was intended to help people without a strong scientific background understand key questions of physics and human existence. In it, he discusses the origins of the universe and its future.
Among his other books are:
— "George and the Unbreakable Code" and other stories: Written by Hawking and his daughter, Lucy, this was a series of illustrated children's books to explain "secret keys to the universe" to younger readers. The books deal with complex topics including the Big Bang.
— "My Brief History": A very personal memoir published in 2013 in which Hawking deals among other things with his childhood, his evolution as a thinker and scientist, the impact of his ALS diagnosis when he was 21 and the ways in which the prospect of an early death affected his work.
— "The Grand Design": Hawking said this 2010 book co-written with American physicist Leonard Mlodinow was intended to address important unanswered questions such as why there is a universe and whether the universe needed a creator and designer. Hawking said his thinking had been influenced by significant advancements in physics that had followed publication of "A Brief History of Time."
— "On the Shoulders of Giants," published in 2003, sees Hawking writing about the great astronomers and physicists who preceded them, presenting in a single volume a vast history of the field that makes heavy use of original papers by Einstein, Copernicus, Newton and many others. Hawking puts each in context and explains their role in altering the course of science as mankind moved out of the Middle Ages.
— "Black Holes and Baby Universes and Other Essays": This best-selling 1994 collection includes a mix of personal and scientific essays.