Cycles of Time by Roger Penrose

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 6 Critic Reviews



From the best-selling author of The Emperor’s New Mind and The Road to Reality, a groundbreaking book that provides new views on three of cosmology’s most profound questions: What, if anything, came before the Big Bang? What is the source of order in our universe? What is its ultimate future?

Current understanding of our universe dictates that all matter will eventually thin out to zero density, with huge black holes finally evaporating away into massless energy. Roger Penrose—one of the most innovative mathematicians of our time—turns around this predominant picture of the universe’s “heat death,” arguing how the expected ultimate fate of our accelerating, expanding universe can actually be reinterpreted as the “Big Bang” of a new one.

Along the way to this remarkable cosmological picture, Penrose sheds new light on basic principles that underlie the behavior of our universe, describing various standard and nonstandard cosmological models, the fundamental role of the cosmic microwave background, and the key status of black holes. Ideal for both the amateur astronomer and the advanced physicist—with plenty of exciting insights for each—Cycles of Time is certain to provoke and challenge.

Intellectually thrilling and accessible, this is another essential guide to the universe from one of our preeminent thinkers.

About Roger Penrose

See more books from this Author
Roger Penrose is Emeritus Rouse Ball Professor of Mathematics at the University of Oxford. He has received numerous prizes and awards, most notably the Wolf Foundation Prize in physics, which he shared with Stephen Hawking, and The Royal Society's Copley Medal. He is the author of three previous books, including The Emperor's New Mind. He lives in Oxford, England.
Published September 6, 2011 by Vintage. 307 pages
Genres: Other, Science & Math. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Cycles of Time

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

The author reprises the discovery of the Doppler shift by Edwin Hubble, which established the fact that our universe was expanding at an increasing rate, and he explains how this allowed astronomers to extrapolate backward to a moment approximately 14 billion years ago “when the matter of the uni...

| Read Full Review of Cycles of Time

The Guardian

See more reviews from this publication

With some mind-numbing maths, Penrose argues that as time ends in the era of massless particles, the fate of our universe can actually be reinterpreted as the big bang of a new one: "Our universe is what I call an aeon in an endless sequence of aeons."

Oct 16 2010 | Read Full Review of Cycles of Time

Publishers Weekly

See more reviews from this publication

Armed with some fairly hairy math (logarithms, tensor calculus), Penrose argues that increasing entropy, a natural consequence of the Big Bang, supports space-time models in which an increasing number of hungry black holes should yield matter-spewing white holes as well.

Mar 28 2011 | Read Full Review of Cycles of Time

The Wall Street Journal

See more reviews from this publication

A daring theory of how the universe, instead of expanding indefinitely, could start again in another Big Bang.

May 27 2011 | Read Full Review of Cycles of Time

New York Journal of Books

See more reviews from this publication

And then, by a geometrical sleight of hand, the new, uniform, low-entropy, “spacelike surface” of the end of the old universe becomes the uniform, low-entropy, “spacelike surface” of the big bang for a new universe.To get from big bang to big bang, Professor Penrose takes us on a journey that sta...

May 03 2011 | Read Full Review of Cycles of Time

Washington Independent Review of Books

that there is a physically real region of space-time prior to ϐ- that is the remote future of some previous universe phase, and that there is also a physically real universe phase that extends beyond our I+ to become a big bang for a new universe.” Penrose calls this “conformal cyclic cosmology.”...

Jun 19 2011 | Read Full Review of Cycles of Time

Reader Rating for Cycles of Time

An aggregated and normalized score based on 59 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes

Rate this book!

Add Review