This compelling collection of facts, theories, and general scientific information is presented in clear, jargon-free language for all non-scientists who want to keep abreast of the latest developments. Two chapters that open the book explain the very small and the very large, starting with the structure of atoms and then going on to describe the composition of the solar system, stars, galaxies and black holes. Author Robert Dinwiddie next describes modern science's understanding of the Big Bang, which scientists believe first brought all of physical reality into existence. A chapter on the planet Earth discusses plate tectonics, continental drift, volcanoes, earthquakes, and extreme weather systems. An overview of the Earth's environment explains the hazards of pollution, the challenges posed by global warming, and the efforts to reverse those patterns by developing renewable energy sources and alternative fuels. Two chapters that follow carry science to a more personal level describing human body functions, the components of good health, disease prevention and control, DNA, the human genome, cloning, and DNA profiling. A concluding chapter translates Einstein's relativity, quantum mechanics, and science's general theories of everything into terms understandable to laypersons. The author's goal in every chapter is to bring his readers up to speed on modern science's most important issues. His intensely readable text is supplemented with more than 400 color illustrations.