Before the Big Bang

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Brought to you by Penguin.

What came before the Big Bang, and what exists outside of the universe it created?

Until recently, scientists could only guess at what lay past the edge of spacetime. But as pioneering theoretical physicist Laura Mersini-Houghton explains, today new scientific tools are giving us the ability to peer beyond the limits of our universe and test our theories about what is there. Her groundbreaking research suggests that we sit in a quantum landscape whose peaks and valleys hide a multitude of other universes, and whose topography holds the secret to the origins of existence itself. Recent evidence has revealed the signatures of one such sibling universe in our own night sky, confirming Mersini-Houghton’s theoretical work and offering humbling proof that our universe is just one member of an unending cosmic family.

A mind-expanding journey through the multiverse, Beyond the Big Bang will reshape our understanding of humanity’s place in the unfathomable vastness of the cosmos.

© Laura Mersini-Houghton 2022 (P) Penguin Audio 2022

Critics Review

  • Laura Mersini-Houghton’s Before the Big Bang provides a fascinating account of the background and underlying motives for her intriguing proposal for the physical principles that may have governed the explosive origin of our universe

    Roger Penrose, University of Oxford, Nobel laureate, and author of Cycles of Time and The Road to Reality
  • What if our universe, vast though it may be, is but an infinitesimal fragment of reality? What would this ‘multiverse’ be like? What would be the implications? And how could we possibly test the idea? There is no better guide to the bizarre, and sometimes paradoxical, cosmic super-realm than Laura Mersini-Houghton, who has devoted her research to seeking the tell-tale signs in the sky hinting that our universe is indeed not alone

    Paul Davies, Arizona State University and author of What's Eating the Universe? And other cosmic questions
  • From one of the world’s most renowned cosmologists, Before the Big Bang offers insights into the Big Bang and, beyond it, into the majestic world of a quantum multiverse. The tale of Laura Mersini-Houghton’s journey of discovery, interlaced with her personal stories of growing up in communist Albania and breaking free of its confines, makes for a fascinating read

    Stephon Alexander, Brown University, and author of Fear of a Black Universe and The Jazz of Physics
  • A fascinating and unusual hybrid of pop science and memoir… The author’s explanation of such exotic ideas is vivid and good-humoured, and much enlivened by tableaux from her education in Albania

    Daily Telegraph, 5*

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