Book of the Week 10: The Rules of Contagion by Adam Kucharski

9th March, 2020

All authors need a little bit of luck, and Kucharski has it with his suddenly-topical book, The Rules of Contagion.

I enjoyed this one a lot (or, strictly, am enjoying it a lot, since I’ve not finished but I wanted my review to be as timely as the book). Kucharski is a young epidemiologist with first-hand experience of the Zika outbreak, as well as a summer working in finance in the middle of the financial crisis, so is well-placed to write a lively book about contagion both of biological illnesses and of other things such as ideas.

The book is well written, plenty of nerdy ideas (Erdos-Renyi networks, for example) leavened both with practical examples and with nice pen-portraits of the scientists involved, such as Robert May, Hilda Hudson, Paul Erdos and Ronald Ross.

I’m learning fast and having a good time. A welcome distraction from the excitable news.

UK: AmazonBlackwell’s

US: Amazon

My NEW book The Next Fifty Things That Made the Modern Economy is out in the UK in May and available to pre-order; please consider doing so online or at your local bookshop – pre-orders help other people find the book and are a huge help.

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