Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Cosmos” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


4.36  ·  Rating details ·  96,797 ratings  ·  2,459 reviews
Cosmos has 13 heavily illustrated chapters, corresponding to the 13 episodes of the Cosmos television series. In the book, Sagan explores 15 billion years of cosmic evolution and the development of science and civilization. Cosmos traces the origins of knowledge and the scientific method, mixing science and philosophy, and speculates to the future of science. The book also ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages
Published May 7th 2002 by Random House (first published 1980)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Cosmos, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Gia Jgarkava Absolutely worth reading! Because:

1. Unlike other scientists, Carl Sagan is also a good writer, so it is great experience to read even known issues
Absolutely worth reading! Because:

1. Unlike other scientists, Carl Sagan is also a good writer, so it is great experience to read even known issues
2. The books significant parts are about the history
3. As a true scientist, Carl Sagan never states facts while discussing theories, but gives scientific evidence, supporting or objecting them.
4. See #1 again :) this is still the best argument for reading(less)
Andara Afiza I already read the prologue when you posted it in La Poseurs. I love this, though! Really descriptive, and fantastic imagery! Next chapter I go!

I already read the prologue when you posted it in La Poseurs. I love this, though! Really descriptive, and fantastic imagery! Next chapter I go! is really andGSMAndara is really recommended site's(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Rating details
Sort: Default
Sep 08, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone trying to understand themselves and the world around them
Can I give this one ten stars? If I had a religion, I would be a Carl Saganian. Love him so much.
Huda Yahya
May 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing

إن تأملنا أنفسنا من منظور كوني
فإن كل واحد منا لا يقدر بثمن
إن خالفك إنساناً في الرأي ، فدعه يعيش
ففي مائة بليون مجرة لن تجد واحداً غيره

هذا باختصار هو كارل ساجان (أو سيجن) أيتها البشرية
واحد من أعظم العلماء الذين أنجبتهم هذه الأرض
ليس فقط لإسهاماته العلمية ، ولكن لإنسانيته التي تدعو حقاً للتأمل

في الحقيقة هذا الرجل يذهلني بقدرته على ربط الخيوط ببعضها وجعل العلم والفلسفة والأساطير والأدب مترابطين في مقالاته الساحرة ببهاء ورونق عجيب وخاص جدّاً


إن كان لديك عزيز شغوف بالعلم ولا يعرف من
I wonder what Carl Sagan may have thought of 9/11 and the world in the new millennium, a strife-torn place which is being shaken up and shaken out every moment. I imagine the civil but slightly horrified and slightly bemused tone he may have employed while talking about the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and the antics of the Bush administration which have become such excellent fodder for stand up comedians the world over. And I can almost detect the note of boyish enthusiasm in his voice while he ma ...more
Dec 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing

The Star system in GR is absolutely inadequate for rating this book.

Gosh, I should not use the term ‘absolutely’ for something in which everything orbits around relativity.

Anyway, I think something like this would give a better idea of my opinion about this book: my rating is an universe of zillions to the power of zillions of stars, …and expanding.

My rating:

What a brilliant read this has been. I have read it very slowly; one chapter a week. But what are thirteen weeks in relation to cosmic ti
I saw the TV series years before I read the book. I'm glad I did; I was able to project the image and voice of Carl Sagan into the words on the page. If there is a better science related, non-fiction book out there, please, someone point it out to me.

Revised Oct. 2017.
Saud Omar
Oct 04, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
من مدونتي: ثمانون كتابا بحثا عن مخرج


لو كنت سوف أقرأ كتاب علمياً واحداً في حياتي, بل لو كنت سوف أقراء كتاباً بشرياً واحداً, سوف أختار كتاب الكون لكارل ساغان.

عادة يكون هدف الكتب العلمية التي تكتب لغير المختصين هو تبسيط المعلومة, لكن كتاب الكون يسلك مسلكا أخر, كتاب الكون كتاب يتأمل في الكون.

يحوي كتاب الكون ثلاثة عشر فصلاً, هذه الفصول كتبت بأسلوب غير تراكمي؛ بمعنى أنك تستطيع قراءة أي فصل دون أن تقرأ الفصول التي قبله, وتتباين هذه الفصول في مواضيعها وفي مجالات هذه المو
Oct 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Angela; anyone who loves science
Recommended to Daniella by: my Aunt Gail
I'm not sure what I could possibly say about Cosmos that hasn't already been said by countless others in the 28 years since its publication, and likely in a far more intelligent and eloquent way than I ever could. But upon recently reading this book for the first time (which may seem a bit belated, but I am, after all, only 23) it instantly became one of my favorites, a status not easily attained by any book, and so I feel compelled to say something, to expound upon its many virtues and why it h ...more
Manuel Antão
Nov 17, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 1980
If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

Flexible Belts: "Cosmos" by Carl Sagan

(Original Review, 1980-11-17)

A lot of talk has been going on about the flaws in Carl Sagan's COSMOS series. These flaws center on either Sagan's unusual speaking style and acting(?) abilities, or the show's contents. I certainly agree that he looks stupid when displaying the "awed" look; however, the complaints about the content of his shows are not justified. Yes, he is short on reasons and long o
Jun 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
A five stars to this book.
Stars borrowed from skies that I witnessed when I was eight or maybe ten and would wake up early at pre-dawn, because that was the best time for star gazing after all.

To read Mr.Sagan, the words so simple describing the Universe so complex. To read a small passage and follow it up with a sleep filled with dreams of all those stars dying and being born every passing moment.
To recall, days of childish innocence gazing towards the infinite.Gazing in anticipation of recog
TS Chan
Mar 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
Carl Sagan was a good writer. For a scientist, his prose had a literary style that is enjoyable to read, and he injected a sense of philosophy into his passionate account of the origins and marvels of the cosmos.

I do find that the delivery was quite heavy-handed in trying to instill that sense of awe and wonder into the reader. What made it even more so was the narrator whose intonation carries a quality of breathless resonance. The arrangement of the subject matter also seemed a bit haphazard
Aug 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Absolutely everybody
Shelves: 2008, favourites
Let's put it simply. Cosmos is required reading for everyone who lives on this planet. It will give you a sense of perspective that nothing else can -- no lofty ideology, no omniscient religion, no inspiring quotations can explain things quite as clearly as Carl Sagan's treatise on science, reality, and the nature of things in this universe. Mind-bending and dazzling, and best of all, uncluttered by confusing scientific terminology. A book worthy of all the positive superlatives I can think of b ...more
Nov 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science
Science is changing the way we see the universe at a rapid pace. Black holes, gravity waves, Higgs boson, and dark matter were (mathematical) theories a generation ago. Today they are reality. Popular science television shows can teach the public about quantum theory but anything over ten years old is pretty much out of date. How can a publication on general science over thirty-five years out of date be relevant in the world today? It depends on who and how the story is told. Carl Sagan possesse ...more

Re-visit 2016:

1: The Shores of the Cosmic Ocean: After an introduction by Ann Druyan, including the benefits of the end of the Cold War, Carl Sagan opens the program with a description of the cosmos and a "Spaceship of the Imagination" (shaped like a dandelion seed). The ship journeys through the universes' hundred billion galaxies, the Local Group, the Andromeda Galaxy, the Milky Way, the Orion Nebula, our Solar System, and finally the planet Earth. Eratosthenes' attempt to calculate the circum
Abubakar Mehdi
Nov 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“ The Cosmos is all that is or ever was or ever will be. Our feeblest contemplations of the Cosmos stir us - there is a tingling in the spine, a catch in the voice, a faint sensation, as if a distant memory, of falling from a height. We know we are approaching the greatest of mysteries. ”

With these lines, we hop on Sagan’s ‘ship of imagination’ to visit distant worlds of Quasars, Pulsars, Black holes and Galaxies that are billions of light years away from us. A peak into the Cosmos.

Sagan is a p
Apr 27, 2007 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: No One
Shelves: science, theology
This book was my bible when I was an enemy of God. As a stubbornly devout atheist, this was the book I turned to for justification of my proud and arrogant rejection of my Creator. Instead of reading this pile of conjecture, I recommend reading the Holy Bible (then get on your knees and repent before the holy God who gave you life and sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to pay the penalty for your lawlessness and sin). :-)
Lewis Weinstein
Jun 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
Wonderful perspectives, marvelous photos and drawings, beautifully written ... considers the hugeness of space and the tiniest atom, all connected ... somehow ... Cosmos has stood the test of time (yes, that's a pun) ... I have read several books on this topic in preparation for a course at Oxford on Cosmology ... this is the best
Oct 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, my-gems
As a child, I was fascinated and mesmerised by our world. It looked so huge, so full of wonders. Еverything was a source of marvel and inspiration. The world, the Earth, waited to be discovered and I had a long life ahead of me to do that.

Then, in teenage years, I already knew all there was to know about life, people, the Earth and the Universe. Nobody could tell me any better. The new source of wonder had become love – falling in love, finding the purpose in another human being, the complete m
Oct 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
كم أنت ضئيل أيها الإنسان

حين تدرك أنك بأرضك بسمائك، لا تساوي شيئاً في خضم هذا الكون، أنه بالإمكان وضع 11 كرة أرضية في كوكب المشتري، أن وحدة قياس المسافة للسفر إلى بعض الكواكب هي السنة الضوئية، أي المسافة التي يقطعها الضوء في سنة، أي 9 مليون كيلومتر، وهذا يعني أنك -أيها البشري-إذا سافرت لكوكب على بعد سنة ضوئية واحدة بسرعة الصوت منذ لحظة ولادتك، فستوافيك المنية قبل الوصول إلى وجهتك.

كم أنت عظيم أيها الإنسان
حين تتوق لاستكشاف المجهول، حينما ينازعك الفضول إلى مابعد طعامك وشرابك، إلى تلك السماوية البراق
Jan 27, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: puny carbon-based life-forms crawling on this mostly-wet little planet
A gorgeous book in every possible way. From the lush illustration and clever diagrams clear through to Sagan's lyrical and at times whimsical narrative, this is the science book for non-scientists. (And if you are a scientist, may this be a lesson in how to tell your story.) Sagan makes the astronomy and the math and the mind-boggling complexity of the universe not only comprehensible but palatable. He wraps up our history as a species into the history of the universe (such that we can even know ...more
Sep 12, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone with an interest in science
Shelves: science
The best book ever written.

A masterful work encompassing the whole of human existence and the universe, with a focus on science.

Sagan discusses
- evolution,
- Kepler, astrology and acceptance of truth in spite of what outcome is desired,
- Venus and Mars, including the made-up belief of life on Mars a century ago,
- the Voyager spacecrafts' Grand Tour of the Outer Planets (a rare alignment),
- ancient Greek scientists,
- Relativity,
- atoms, elements, and how star make them,
- Creation Myths, incl Hin
Mar 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the closest I have ever been to love.

This book is not only a huge source of knowledge for those looking forward to getting enthralled into the science of cosmos, but also one that I know has a special meaning for some people out there. Both of the before mentioned apply to me, but why do I say it has a special meaning? Well, as simple as it may sound, this book was what took me to where I am right now.

There has always been magic for me. As a kid, I always believed in everything everyone
Pawan Mishra
Aug 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science
It has always made me very curious how science touches many other seemingly different subjects of history, philosophy, and religion. This book is really very impressive. A story of 15 billion years of the cosmos compressed in this relatively smaller book! Easy to read and understand, Carl Sagan's Cosmos draws the reader into a world so vivid and realistic that it's hard not to be mesmerized throughout while reading this book.
Heather K (dentist in my spare time)

I wish I had LOVED this book as Carl Sagan is an icon. It was entertaining, if you ignore the fact that it is VERY dated (I mean, 40+ years dated), which is not its fault. However, I much prefer A Short History of Nearly Everything for a review of the same information.
Oct 31, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Humans... How little we are. How little we know.

Finally I finished this book last night at about 23:00. This is one of the best popular scientific books that I have read. This book is well written, reads like a mystery novel and is a great source of interesting information. Scientific information is explained in "simple reader" language.

The focus in this book is on astronomy : how big is our universe, how old it is, how it "works", etc. Sagan pays a lot of attention to stars and galaxies, but al
In the beginning there was a bang, and it was big. Stupendous. The universe as we know it, began. Time itself started to tick and tock. Space was appearing seemingly out of nothingness, as it continues to do so still. Intense heat and energy were produced. And from them matter coalesced. And so stars formed. And from stars everything else sprang into existence: more stars, galaxies, the glorious milky way, our spectacular sun, our caring earth, our gorgeous moon shortly thereafter, and finally, ...more
Shahad takleef
Jun 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The surface of the Earth is the shore of the cosmic ocean. On this shore, we've learned most of what we know. Recently, we've waded a little way out, maybe ankle-deep, and the water seems inviting.
Some part of our being knows this is where we came from.
We long to return
and we can .
because the cosmos is also within us. We're made of starstuff

i don't think i'll ever give 5 stars more wholeheartedly as i am doing now ..
5 shimmering , eye-blindingly shinning stars , the brightest suns GR has in
Nov 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It took me long to read it, but it was worth it. First thing that captivates me that despite being a nonfiction scientific book, Carl Sagan described the whole universe, explained the science in such a poetic and eloquent way that you would think he is a romantic poet! And the parts about his childhood and his enthusiasm for astronomy, for cosmos were the cutest and beautiful thing I have ever read. I saw myself, my passion for space in him, in his writings. And best part of this book was the in ...more
César Bustíos
Jul 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science, nonfiction, 2018
"El nitrógeno de nuestro ADN, el calcio de nuestros dientes, el hierro de nuestra sangre, el carbono de nuestras tartas de manzana se hicieron en los interiores de estrellas en proceso de colapso. Estamos hechos, pues, de sustancia estelar."

El entusiasmo de Sagan rompe las barreras del tiempo. Su pasión contagia como el peor de los virus. No puedo empezar a imaginar la enorme cantidad de mentes que han sido y serán influenciadas por la frescura y la sencillez de Sagan para tratar temas científic
Feb 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
"Okumaya neden bu kadar gec kalmisim ki?" diye kendi kendime sordum bitirdigimde. Inceleme yazmak icin biraz bekledim. Cunku ne yazmaliyim ya da kafamdakileri nasil anlatmaliyim bir fikrim yoktu ilk defa. Beni en cok etkileyen seylerden biri Iskenderiye Kutuphanesi yakilinca neleri yitirdigimize dair anlatinin oldugu bolumdu sanirim. Carl Sagan adi zaten kitaba, icerige, kaliteye dair soyleyecek cok sey birakmiyor. Keyifle okudum.

Belgeselden de asina oldugumuz okumadan once konu hakkinda on ara
Jan 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is one of those kind of books that comes along every few years that is so fantastic that you purposely drag out reading it in order to savor its awesomeness. It doesn't matter that it was written 25+ years ago, pre-Hubble telescope, before the fall of the USSR, etc. - Sagan's insight and wide-reaching scope are timeless.

The last few chapters are so rich in thought-provoking information they are worth re-reading. Sagan would have never wanted his work to become the foundation of a religion,
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Indian Readers: Unraveling the Mysteries of the Universe (Gorab, Jaya, Sri) 29 227 Jul 10, 2018 02:37AM  
Cosmos 1 5 May 14, 2018 04:24PM  
Cosmos by Carl Sagan 1 6 May 13, 2018 10:26PM  
Cosmos 1 2 May 13, 2018 01:13PM  
Whats your feeling about This book 15 46 Mar 06, 2018 12:26PM  
Flaneur_ww book club: Cosmos discussion 1 3 Jan 16, 2018 05:32AM  
  • Origins: Fourteen Billion Years of Cosmic Evolution
  • Bad Astronomy: Misconceptions and Misuses Revealed, from Astrology to the Moon Landing "Hoax"
  • The Hidden Reality: Parallel Universes and the Deep Laws of the Cosmos
  • The Ascent of Man
  • Six Easy Pieces: Essentials of Physics By Its Most Brilliant Teacher
  • Wonders of the Universe
  • Unweaving the Rainbow: Science, Delusion and the Appetite for Wonder
  • Coming of Age in the Milky Way
  • Visions: How Science Will Revolutionize the 21st Century
  • Black Holes & Time Warps: Einstein's Outrageous Legacy
  • On the Shoulders of Giants: The Great Works of Physics and Astronomy
  • Atom: An Odyssey from the Big Bang to Life on Earth...and Beyond
  • The Panda's Thumb: More Reflections in Natural History
  • In Search of Schrödinger's Cat: Quantum Physics and Reality
In 1934, scientist Carl Sagan was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. After earning bachelor and master's degrees at Cornell, Sagan earned a double doctorate at the University of Chicago in 1960. He became professor of astronomy and space science and director of the Laboratory for Planetary Studies at Cornell University, and co-founder of the Planetary Society. A great popularizer of science, Sagan produced th ...more
“Every one of us is, in the cosmic perspective, precious. If a human disagrees with you, let him live. In a hundred billion galaxies, you will not find another.” 3263 likes
“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 2684 likes
More quotes…