Why does one smoker die of lung cancer but another live to 100? The answer is 'The Hidden Half' - those random, unknowable variables that mess up our attempts to comprehend the world. We humans are very clever creatures - but we're idiots about how clever we really are. In this entertaining and ingenious book, Blastland reveals how in our quest to make the world more understandable, we lose sight of how unexplainable it often is. The result - from GDP figures to medicine - is that experts know a lot less than they think. Filled with compelling stories from economics, genetics, business, and science, The Hidden Half is a warning that an explanation which works in one arena may not work in another.
Entertaining and provocative, it will change how you view the world.
Highly original and challenging... Once you have read this book, you can't unread it. Source: Daniel Finkelstein, The Times
Fascinating and provocative. Blastland is one of the most original thinkers around. Source: Tim Harford - Financial Times columnist and author of The Undercover Economist
Elegantly written and mind-expanding, The Hidden Half will enthrall you with its storytelling while educating you with its scientific depth. Source: Daniel H. Pink - bestselling author of Drive
Brilliant. Blastland provides an explanation of the need for humility in the face of the inevitable limits to knowledge and our all-too-human temptation to tell stories about the world that go far beyond what the evidence will support. Source: Diane Coyle - Bennett Professor of Public Policy, Cambridge University
Fascinating... As John Wooden said, it's what you learn after you know it all that counts. Source: Andrew Gelman - author of Rich State Poor State Red State Blue State
Excellent. Blastland makes a compelling case that God is fond of playing dice with the cosmos-and the list of unpredictable things keeps growing, not shrinking. Source: Phillip Tetlock - bestselling author of Superforecasting
Beautifully written and often very funny. Anyone making decision that matter should enjoy this book and profit from its lessons. Source: Dame Frances Cairncross - Chair, Executive Committee of the Institute for Fiscal Studies