Stephen Hawking has written a children's book called George's Secret Key to the Universe. (Hawking's grandson is named George.) It's aimed at ages 9-11, is 304 pages (in hardback) and is to be the first of three. (Oh how we geeks do love our trilogies.)
It's written with his daughter Lucy (who is an author and journalist) and Christophe Galfard. According to Galfard, they wanted "provide a modern vision of cosmology from the Big Bang to the present day."
I have three main comments in regards to this news:
1) How fucking awesome is that? A Hawking book for kids? I have pre-ordered mine. I figure if Hawking wrote it for an 11 year old, I should be able to understand it. That's about how old I feel when I read anything by him.
2) 304 pages? Long for a kid's book? I don't recall how long books aimed at nine year olds are.
3) The Amazon page for the book has links to several discussions going on. They have titles like "evolution is a religion (757)", "Science & Religion (124)", "Human pathologies: an Incompetent Designer (63)", and "Fair Treatment of Evolution Begins With Its Definition (2667)". Those numbers are the number of replies in each topic. These are all in the science section of their forums. Who knew Amazon even HAD forums?!
I skimmed a few of the threads and as soon as I saw the standard poor debate tactics and logical fallacies, I whistled a casual tune and cautiously backed out the door.