Michael Brooks (science writer)

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Michael Brooks
Born (1970-05-07) 7 May 1970 (age 53)
Other namesNone
OccupationScience writer
Known forExplaining difficult scientific concepts to people in his books.

Michael Edward Brooks (born 7 May 1970) is an English science writer, noted for explaining complex scientific research and findings to the general population.


Brooks holds a PhD in Quantum Physics from the University of Sussex.[1][2] He was previously an editor for New Scientist magazine,[3] and currently works as a consultant for that magazine. His writing has appeared in The Guardian, The Independent, The Observer, The Times Higher Education Supplement, and Playboy.[1] His first novel, Entanglement, was published in 2007. His first non-fiction book, an exploration of scientific anomalies entitled 13 Things That Don't Make Sense, was published in 2009.[4][5] The book expands an article that Brooks wrote for New Scientist.[6]

Brooks' next book, The Big Questions: Physics, was released in February 2010. It contains twenty 3,000-word essays addressing the most fundamental and frequently asked questions about science.[7]

Brooks appeared as a regular guest on George Lamb's BBC Radio 6 Music show. His slot on the show, entitled Weird Science, features weird and wonderful stories from the world of science.[8]

Brooks currently co-presents the podcast Science(ish) with UK presenter Rick Edwards which explores the science behind the movies.

Science Party[edit]

Science Party
SpokespersonMichael Brooks,
Sumit Paul-Choudhury
Founded20 April 2010 (2010-04-20)

The Science Party is a UK political party that was launched on 20 April 2010[9] by Brooks and Sumit Paul-Choudhury, an editor of New Scientist.[10]

A key goal in the Science Party manifesto is ensuring "that science, mathematics and engineering have sufficient funding, skills and political priority".

The Science Party challenged MP David Tredinnick in his constituency of Bosworth in the East Midlands,[11] in the 2010 general election on a pro-scientific manifesto. Tredinnick is a supporter of alternative medicine and critical of science.

It was revealed in the 2009 United Kingdom parliamentary expenses scandal that Tredinnick claimed £700 in his MP expenses for astrology software and training, which he repaid following media publicity. Tredinnick also led 70 MPs in a motion to ignore a House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee report recommending the NHS to cease funding homeopathic treatments.[12]

In criticising Tredinnick, Brooks also points to the cash-for-questions affair, where Tredinnick accepted a £1,000 payment from an under cover reporter for what was described as a consultancy service but which essentially involved raising a question before parliament, an act that has been described as accepting a bribe for interference in parliamentary proceedings. This scandal led to Tredinnick and one other MP being suspended from Parliament. Brooks also criticises Tredinnick for his MP's expense claim of £125 for attending a course on "intimate relationships".

Tredinnick defended his views on using astrology for medicine by saying "Systems of healthcare in India and China have linked medicine and astronomy for centuries. Are we really just dismissing their views?".[13]

Brooks describes Tredinnick as "a champion of pseudo-science and a hindrance to rational governance".

Brooks received 197 votes in the election, 0.4% of the votes cast.[14]



  • Quantum Computing and Communications, edited by Brooks (Springer Verlag, 1999)
  • Entanglement (2007)
  • 13 Things That Don't Make Sense: The most baffling scientific mysteries of our time (Profile Books, 2008); US, Doubleday, 2008
  • Physics (Quercus Books, The Big Questions, 2010)
  • Free Radicals: The Secret Anarchy of Science (Profile, 2011, ISBN 978-1-84668-405-0)[a]
  • Can We Travel Through Time?: The 20 big questions of physics (Quercus, 2012)
  • The Quantum Astrologer's Handbook (Scribe Books, 2017)
  • The Art of More: how mathematics created civilisation (Scribe UK , 9 Sept. 2021, ISBN 1912854953, 978-1912854950)

Essays and reporting[edit]

  • "In Place of God: Can Secular Science ever oust Religious Belief – and should it even try?", New Scientist, 20 November 2006[b]
  • "To Make the Most of Wind Power, Go Fly a Kite", New Scientist, 14 May 2008[c]
  • "Smallest Planet weighs just Three Earths", New Scientist, 2 June 2008[d]
  • Brooks, Michael (21 November 2014). "Not with a bang but a printer". New Statesman. 143 (5237): 18–19.


  1. ^ "Book review by Carolyn Haley: Free Radicals: The Secret Anarchy of Science". Nyjournalofbooks.com. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  2. ^ "In Place of God: Can Secular Science ever oust Religious Belief – and should it even try?". Templeton-cambridge.org. 20 November 2006. Archived from the original on 21 August 2007. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
  3. ^ "Science news and science jobs from New Scientist - New Scientist". Environment.newscientist.com. 11 April 2014. Archived from the original on 31 March 2015. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
  4. ^ "Smallest Planet weighs just Three Earths". New Scientist. 11 April 2014. Retrieved 15 April 2014.


  1. ^ a b "author and journalist - Home". Michael Brooks. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
  2. ^ "About the author - Free Radicals - The Secret Anarchy of Science". Freeradicalsbook.com. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
  3. ^ "Tibor Jones // Authors // Michael Brooks". tiborjones.com. Archived from the original on 20 November 2008.
  4. ^ "author and journalist - Home". Michael Brooks. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
  5. ^ "13 Things That Don't Make Sense by Michael Brooks - Book - eBook". Random House. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
  6. ^ "Science news and science jobs from New Scientist - New Scientist". Space.newscientist.com. 11 April 2014. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
  7. ^ Brooks, Michael (4 February 2010). The Big Questions: Physics: Michael Brooks: 9781849161466: Amazon.com: Books. ISBN 978-1849161466.
  8. ^ "BBC Radio 6 Music - George Lamb". Bbc.co.uk. 20 June 2010. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
  9. ^ Highfield, Roger (20 April 2010). "Tories and Lib Dems set out science policies". New Scientist. Retrieved 21 April 2010.
  10. ^ Highfield, Roger (27 April 2010). "General Election 2010: why we need the Science Party". Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 30 April 2010. Retrieved 28 April 2010.
  11. ^ "Introducing the Science Party - Research Blogs". Exquisitelife.researchresearch.com. 21 April 2010. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  12. ^ UK election: Round one to the Science Party New Scientist blog, 29 April 2010, retrieved 08/05/2010.
  13. ^ Brooks, Michael (30 March 2010). "Taking a stand for science". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 April 2010.
  14. ^ UK election: The Science Party's democracy experiment, Sumit Paul-Choudhury, The S Word blog, New Scientist, 7 May 2010, retrieved 08/05/2010.

External links[edit]