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Publisher's Summary

A companion book to the critically acclaimed BBC series. 

The best-selling authors of Wonders of the Universe are back with another blockbuster, a groundbreaking exploration of our Solar System as it has never been seen before. 

Mercury, a lifeless victim of the Sun’s expanding power. Venus, once thought to be lush and fertile, now known to be trapped within a toxic and boiling atmosphere. Mars, the red planet, doomed by the loss of its atmosphere. Jupiter, twice the size of all the other planets combined, but insubstantial. Saturn, a stunning celestial beauty, the jewel of our Solar System. Uranus, the sideways planet and the first ice giant. Neptune, dark, cold and whipped by supersonic winds. Pluto, the dwarf planet, a frozen rock.

Andrew Cohen and Professor Brian Cox take listeners on a voyage of discovery, from the fiery heart of our Solar System, to its mysterious outer reaches. They touch on the latest discoveries that have expanded our knowledge of the planets, their moons and how they come to be, alongside recent stunning and mind-boggling NASA photography.

©2019 Brian Cox and Andrew Cohen (P)2019 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

What the critics say

Praise for Prof Brian Cox: "Cox’s romantic, lyrical approach to astrophysics all adds up to an experience that feels less like homework and more like having a story told to you. A really good story, too." (The Guardian)

"He bridges the gap between our childish sense of wonder and a rather more professional grasp of the scale of things." (The Independent)

"If you didn’t utter a wow watching the TV, you will while reading the book." (The Times)

What listeners say about The Planets

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Great book a out the planets.

A romantic and nformative story about our planets and our solar system. Time well spent.

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AMAZING!!

This is such an awesome book. I very highly recommend it. Excellent narrator. Excellent content and flow. It will amaze you! I've listened to it over and over.

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  • Chris
  • 2020-01-14

baroque and flowery verbiage

The style of this book is much more flowery and grandiose than I expect from a science book. It also came across as preachy at times. I found the affected verbiage off-putting; others may enjoy the authors' effort to share their love for planetary science, along with their vision for settling Mars.

The meat of each chapter typically had good information that was educational and enjoyable.

The narrator was good, though he seemed to reflect the flowery verbiage.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 2019-09-03

A Stellar (or at least Astronomical) Piece of Work

The level of care on display here in both the writing, where large concepts are broken down into simple ones for the sake of laypeople, and in the narration, where the narrator does an exquisite job of bringing the work to life in such a way as to make it practically breathe with calm, and calming precision, is truly remarkable... I highly recommend this book for any fans of space science, Dr. Brian Cox, or who are generally interested in learning about the wonders beyond our own blue marble

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  • Moose in NZ
  • 2019-12-27

more up to date than most

well organized and paced. unlike others which cite "upcoming' missions that are in fact well underway or over, this title includes recent information. It is well presented and suitable for audio (others I have felt were print edition titles that didn't really work without tables and illustrations). Excellent value for money. I have listened 3 times within a month of buying.

3 people found this helpful

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  • J. Ritt
  • 2019-08-28

A glorious description of the planets for adults!

Professor Cox' knowledge of science is rivaled only by his ability to share that knowledge in a clear, concise, and interesting manner. His enthusiasm for, and love of, the topic shines through the entire book.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2020-01-19

Loved every minute!

Exploring our solar system from the rocky inner worlds to the gas giants and then the ice planets and beyond was like an adventure listening to this book. The way the book unfolded was logical and interesting and the narration was perfect, clear and well spoken. Who knew that the discoverer of Pluto would end up being onboard the craft that was destined to explore the icy planet that is no longer a full planet in our solar system?
So many discoveries, every chapter had me riveted. Totally loved it!

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  • Mark Gladwish
  • 2021-01-11

Exceeds all expectations

An enthralling masterpiece for the whole family, whether you're new to astronomy or a seasoned celestial book worm. I highly recommend it.

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  • hammi
  • 2020-12-27

A well written book by erudite authors on an esoteric topic

This is a book for readers who love astronomy, astrophysics; who might be tyro planet hunters or who simply admire prof brian cox. Although it’s an earnest reading but it’s remarkably well written and is filled with perspicacious remarks by sagacious authors on an esoteric topic which deserves extol from the readers.

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  • Bookwormish
  • 2020-03-29

From a Lifetime Astronomy Fan

I loved this audiobook. It was a fascinating story full of amazing facts and theories about the planets our solar system. I highly recommend it!

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  • GHinTX
  • 2021-07-12

Insightful and enjoyable

This was just the right mix of science and storytelling for a casual listen by someone interested in the origin of the planets.

The narrator has a wonderful, listenable tone.

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  • Cordero family
  • 2021-06-29

Bye, bye Cassini :(

The story was full of amazing details about the planets. It was explained clearly and beautifully. I never thought I would feel so sad for a spacecraft but the author caught my imagination with his heart wrenching description of the Cassini’s last seconds. Beautifully done.