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Liquid Rules

The Delightful and Dangerous Substances That Flow Through Our Lives
Written by: Mark Miodownik
Narrated by: Michael Page
Length: 7 hrs and 16 mins
Categories: Science & Math, Physics
4.5 out of 5 stars (3 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Sometimes explosive, often delicious, occasionally poisonous, but always interesting: The New York Times best-selling author of Stuff Matters reveal the secret lives of liquids: the shadow counterpart of our solid "stuff". 

We all know that without water we couldn't survive, and that sometimes a cup of coffee or a glass of wine feels just as vital. But do we really understand how much we rely on liquids, or the destructive power they hold? Set over the course of a flight from London to San Francisco, Liquid Rules offers listeners a fascinating tour of these formless substances, told through the language of molecules, droplets, heartbeats, and ocean waves. Throughout the trip, we encounter fluids within the plane - from a seemingly ordinary cup of tea to a liquid crystal display screen - and without, in the volcanoes of Iceland, the frozen expanse of Greenland, and the marvelous California coastline. We come to see liquids as substances of wonder and fascination, and to understand their potential for death and destruction. Just as in Stuff Matters, Mark Miodownik's unique brand of scientific storytelling brings liquids and their mysterious properties to life in a captivating new way.

©2019 Mark Miodownik (P)2019 Recorded Books

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  • Overall
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  • Wayne
  • Matthews, NC
  • 2019-08-04

Interesting book!

Rather than write a normal review I'm going to comment in list format.

1. I like LIQUID RULES more than Stuff Matters the author's primary book. Both are excellent.
2. The author's references to chemical formulas is a possible negative for many listeners.
3. This book is written about the author's thoughts/actions as he flies from London to San Francisco.
4. I feel sorry for Susan who was the author's row mate on his long flight. He was obnoxious!
5. The author's dry humor makes LIQUID RULES more interesting.
6. Micheal Page's narration is fabulous.

24 of 26 people found this review helpful

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  • Catherine Puma
  • Alexandria, VA
  • 2019-03-06

Eye Opening Discussion of Everyday Liquids

I was delighted when I saw Miodownik was coming out with another book. Having enjoyed his "Stuff Matters", I acquired "Liquid Rules" and was not disappointed. Framed by the narrative device of observing liquids around him while flying from Britain to California, Miodownik describes oceans, glaciers, clouds, wine, saliva, droplets in the pressurized cabin, tea, coffee, blood... to name a few.

I learned so much! As a result, I found myself not just noticing all the liquids I encounter in my life, but also contemplating what properties they have in relation to one another. This included pondering the process of converting my bar of solid soap into a liquid substance by interacting it with water, another liquid. Miodownik's section on hand soap vs. liquid soap (and his preference for the former) was thus especially interesting.

My only quibble with this work was its lack of acknowledging its own limitations. The subtitle implies that "dangerous" liquids would also be discussed, but--with the exception of mercury--the diversity of naturally occurring toxins and poisons are not mentioned. Of course it is unrealistic to expect such a short work to touch upon everything, but I wish there was more of a "there's so much more to learn and discuss" preface and/or conclusion. That being said, this was extremely eye opening, as "Stuff Matters" was, and I will be recommending it to many. This is a great way to inspire a natural curiosity for the natural observation of fluid dynamics. I can even see myself re-reading it again!

52 of 59 people found this review helpful

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  • L Morris
  • Jenks, OK, US
  • 2019-05-14

Fascinating

An eye-opening, mind-bending look at liquids. This book defies simple definition. It is history, encompassing eons, science lessons, global consciousness and science fiction losing its fiction status. All this and more, achieved by close analysis of everyday ( and a few not so everyday) liquids. Fascinating. An incentive to read more science. The narrator is delightful, too!

24 of 27 people found this review helpful

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  • Fact addict
  • Dripping Springs, Texas!
  • 2019-07-28

Wonderfully surprising!!

At first, I contemplated returning this. I am SO GLAD I did not! With further delving into the information given, it got better, and better, and absolutely better! Possibly one of the best I have ever acquired!
I found that a chapter at a time was the best way to absorb the true plethora of information. Listen to a bit, or a chapter, then stop and go about life, letting it sink in and become pertinent. All the applications are appropriate to our modern life, which is unusual; as new applications come about, this book will become passé. Please, sir: Write another book like this when this becomes old news!!
The narrator is superb... and becomes the embodiment of the facts presented! His voice and accent rounded out my life quite well for a period of time... and ushered me into sleep as well. My compliments!
The author gets major props for making very, very complex subject matter quite accessible.
In short: EVERYONE who uses any liquid should dip into this !

35 of 41 people found this review helpful

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  • Luke
  • Calgary, Alberta
  • 2019-08-24

Miodownik's last book was good, this one is great

This book is not boring. It is a pleasant way to better understand the world, in particular the liquid substances around us. Mark introduces us to jet fuel, snot, saliva, and CFCs in a single corky narrative. Mark's academic background makes him an authority on these matters, but I wish he spent more time and went more in-depth on the substances he discussed: each could have its own book. But the overviews in this book are worth the listen.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • J Mikel
  • United States
  • 2019-03-18

You want to learn something? Try this!

This book makes the complex simple and understandable. I never realized how little I knew about liquids.

20 of 25 people found this review helpful

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  • R. MCRACKAN
  • Raleigh, NC
  • 2019-02-28

Appreciation of liquids

I loved "Stuff Matters" and was delighted to see that there's a sequel. Liquid Rules has all the strengths of Stuff Matters: wit, focused bite sized chapters, science, interesting history, and perfect narration. For anyone who enjoyed either Stuff Matters or Liquid Rules, you should definitely also check out the other. I can't help but wonder what his next theme will be.

13 of 16 people found this review helpful

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  • C. Scott Smith
  • Dallas, TX USA
  • 2019-07-18

Book dripped in my brain.

Learned so much. Love the author reading and loved how the author conveyed the information through the use of a plane flight. Really great book. Really enjoyed it I highly recommend it!

16 of 20 people found this review helpful

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  • Ken Miner
  • 2019-03-01

Great information

This information is presented in an easy to understand and easy to listen to format. Listened to Stuff Matters also, looking for more like books these.

10 of 14 people found this review helpful

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  • Jose Medrano
  • 2019-08-31

Educational, Entertaining and Interesting!

I enjoyed this book more than I thought I would. The narrator did a great job and the author made a nonfiction book that flowed (no pun intended) very well.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful