by Robert Gilmore, Copernicus,
Springer-Verlag, 175 Fifth Ave.,
New York 10010, 1995,
184 pages, $18.00
One of the more interesting areas of modern science is quantum mechanics. Quantum mechanics can be defined as a theoretical framework that provides an explanation of the way things are in the physical world. Many times, the explanations provided by quantum mechanics seem to defy common sense, and this book is an attempt to resolve that problem.
Alice is a bored teenager watching television who ends up falling into the picture tube and ends up in Quantumland. Quantumland is an amusement park smaller than an atom where every attraction demonstrates a different aspect of quantum mechanics. The story is written very much like Alice in Wonderland with a cat (Schrödinger's cat), a mermaid, an emperor, and ugly duckling, etc.--all who talk and explain different aspects of quantum mechanics.
Throughout the book, there are boxes which contain statements summarizing what the reader should have understood about quantum mechanics from what they have read. At the end of many chapters, there are notes which explain in more detail the points being made. Gilmore is very clever, but he is dealing with difficult subject matter, and the reader will get as lost as Alice does on occasions. Alice sometimes seems a little too brilliant to be the age she is presented to be, but this is a minor problem.
This is not a book on apologetics. No where does the role of God get involved except there is repeated reference to "rules" which only allow certain things to occur. The book is useful only to those who wish to understand quantum mechanics and how it works. Since skeptics sometimes attempt to use quantum mechanics to preclude God from the process of creation, it is important to understand this area of study. We recommend this book as a useful tool to that end.
Back to Contents Does God Exist?, NovDec97.