Advice for great books on physics Please

  1. Mar 15, 2011 #1
    I would like a recommendation for a book that is specifically focused on waves. If anyone could recommend me one I would really appreciate it .

    Also if you know of any Great books on specifically Electricity && Magnetism, Thermodynamics, Optics, and Newtonian Mechanics...

    **I already have a Calculus-Based Physics book that covers the subjects, but I'd like to believe that 4 chapters for Waves, Thermodynamics, or Optics does not give those topics justice...**
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 15, 2011 #2


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    Since you provide zero helpful information such as your level of mathematical ability, level of understanding of "the basics", previous coursework, etc. it's hard to give you a good answer. Therefore, I'll suggest "Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica" by Isaac Newton. It's in Latin, and one of the best around for Newtonian Mechanics.
  4. Mar 16, 2011 #3
    Um, no. I doubt you would find Principia very interesting or helpful. All the proofs are heavily geometric, and the subject was not nearly as clear as it is today; physics education has changed a great deal since Newton's time. Perhaps you could leave Principia as side-reading in your own time if you are interested.
    And the OP did say he has taken a calculus-based physics course.

    For Newtonian Mechanics there is Taylor
    For E&M the most popular book is Griffiths

    You will need to know vector calculus and ODEs at least.

    Can't help you with the other topics I'm afraid.
  5. Mar 16, 2011 #4
    Ive finished Differential Equations and Linear Algebra, I am also learning about complex variables and Partial Differential Equations independently while I'm waiting to transfer for my Junior Year .

    I just want some books more indepth than the average Calculus-Based General Physics book.... Thanks and If you or anyone else has any other suggestions I'm open to them....
  6. Mar 17, 2011 #5
    The Feynman Lectures are an obvious recommendation.
  7. Mar 17, 2011 #6
    I just saw that you want a book focused on waves. I am not exactly sure what you want, but there is the book byVibrations and Waves by French
  8. Mar 28, 2011 #7

    There's another version of the Principia written the Nobel Laureate S.Chandrasekhar
    "Newton's Principia for the Common Reader" . It might be fun to learn....
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