(This is about pop science books, not textbooks; moderators, please feel free to move if appropriate.. I'm new to the forums & new to studying physics in late middle age - here is http://[URL="https://www.physicsfor...sics-fan-hope-to-overcome-math-block.896768/"']my intro thread[/URL] - and I am getting geared up for self-study at more or less a high school level. My basic text will be one of Ben Crowell's books - i.e. Light and Energy or else Simple Nature. But I will read other books if I think they might be conceptually helpful. About a week ago I came across https://www.amazon.com/Galileos-Fin...d=1481882077&sr=8-1&keywords=galileo's+finger, by the chem prof/author Peter Atkins; it looked like it might be useful to start nudging Newtonian concepts of work & energy into my head, in advance of the mathematical models for same. Yesterday I started reading it; and I find I am so disgusted at the presentation that I will likely return the book for a refund. Here's an example. Atkins has just done a brief run-through of "energy as the capacity to do work," using a simplified example of pushing or raising a metal block. Pretty much no math. So far so good; but then he says the following: What do I object to? Well, first of all, for my money (and I admit I'm a novice, but even so) he's mangled the intended simplification of "electrical energy"; his definition better suits a state of neutral charge than it does a state of separated charges, let alone charge in motion. Worse to me is how he mangles the attempt to widen potential & kinetic energy conceptually; he doesn't even mention that his example was related to gravity, and perhaps that's where the difficulty begins. He seems to unintentionally imply that EM is somehow subordinate to gravity - or something like that; it's impossible to really know what he means. Far better for clarity of relationships is this from the HyperPhysics site - - or for that matter this simple navigational graphic, also from HyperPhysics: Anyway I find myself unwilling to continue in a book where the other subjects to be covered will be material I'm completely unfamiliar with (DNA, entropy, symmetry, etc.). I just don't trust this fellow. It's not that I think that he himself is ignorant; it's that I don't trust him as a guide for the ignorant. Which seems to show that simplification for laypersons is an awfully tricky business. I have always enjoyed the short video available on YouTube in which a mostly patient but slightly irked Feynman is trying to explain to an interviewer why rubber bands aren't a good metaphor for magnetic attraction or repulsion; and I also have enjoyed his diatribe on the textbook industry & how textbooks for children quickly mangle even the simplest ideas. I'm trying to think of who the really good science writers are for laypersons. I could name some for psychology, anthropology, etc.; but how about physics? I haven't read as widely there. Carl Sagan to me was more about culture (e.g. https://www.amazon.com/Demon-Haunte...=1481882709&sr=8-1&keywords=sagan+candle+dark, which I loved.) I am currently leafing through https://www.amazon.com/Universe-Tea...7&sr=8-1&keywords=the+universe+and+the+teacup, by K.C. Cole, but am not sure it's my cup of tea. I did enjoy a good deal https://www.amazon.com/Explain-Worl...81882920&sr=8-1&keywords=to+explain+the+world, by Steven Weinberg; that's more the sort of book I like. Anyone have any recommendations? I'm especially interested in classical mechanics at the moment, maybe starting with Galileo.