12 Books That Changed the World, Paperback Book
2 out of 5 (3 ratings)


When we think of great events in the history of the world, we tend to think of war, revolution, political upheaval or natural catastrophe.

But throughout history there have been moments of vital importance that have taken place not on the battlefield, or in the palaces of power, or even in the violence of nature, but between the pages of a book.

In our digitised age of instant information it is easy to underestimate the power of the printed word.

In his fascinating new book accompanying the ITV series, Melvyn Bragg presents a vivid reminder of the book as agent of social, political and personal revolution.

Twelve Books that Changed the World presents a rich variety of human endeavour and a great diversity of characters.

There are also surprises. Here are famous books by Darwin, Newton and Shakespeare - but we also discover the stories behind some less well-known works, such as Marie Stopes' Married Love, the original radical feminist Mary Wollstonecraft's A Vindication of the Rights of Woman - and even the rules to an obscure ball game that became the most popular sport in the world ...


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 384 pages, 3 x 8pp colour
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton General Division
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Literary studies: general
  • ISBN: 9780340839829

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Showing 1 - 3 of 3 reviews.

Review by

Read like a draft set of notes for one of his radio programmes. The content kept drifting from a biography of the writer to the content of the book and its context. It would had worked better if a) it explored why the book came to be written and then b) its impact. Did it make science and technology exciting and accessible as one of the blurbs say? No and its always worth asking if the puff comes from friends of the author...

Review by

Not the books I would have expected, but an interesting list none the less.

Review by

This is the book of the TV series, and as one might expect, is therefore shallow, trite, and dull. It contains information, but you already know it all.

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