How to Make an Apple Pie from Scratch

Harry Cliff

23 June 2022
400 pages


‘If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe’ - Carl Sagan

Inspired by Sagan’s famous line, How To Make An Apple Pie From Scratch sets out on a journey to unearth everything we know about our universe: how it started, how we found out, and what we still have left to discover . . .

‘Witty, approachable and captivating’ - Robin Ince
‘A fascinating exploration of how we learned what matter really is’ - Sean Carroll

Will we ever be able to understand the very first moments of the world we inhabit? What is matter really made of? How did anything survive the fearsome heat of the Big Bang?

In pursuit of answers, we meet the scientists, astronomers and philosophers who brought us to our present understanding of the world – offering readers a front-row seat to the most dramatic journey human beings have ever embarked on.

TED Talk speaker and academic Harry Cliff's How To Make An Apple Pie From Scratch is an essential, fresh and funny guide to how we got to where we are now – and what we have to come.

‘A delightfully fresh and accessible approach to one of the great quests of science’ - Graham Farmelo
‘Lays out not just what we know, but how we found out (and what is left to be discovered’ - Katie Mack

Cliff's engaging and personable writing style, along with his infectious enthusiasm, follows in the best traditions of Feynman and Sagan . . . a page-turner.
Witty, approachable and captivating . . . Every time you eat a pie, you'll find yourself contemplating the universe and why exactly there is one in the first place - a wild ride through the remarkable adventures and thoughts that have led to a species beginning to work out why it is and why everything else is too.
A fascinating exploration of how we learned what matter really is, and the journey matter takes from the Big Bang, through exploding stars, ultimately to you and me.