Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson - Review

Astrophysics does not need to be filled with the unexplained technical jargon that only specialists or very keen readers can decipher. Neil deGrasse Tyson is one of the finest astrophysicists who, like another prominent astrophysicist before him named Carl Sagan, has mastery in explaining complex astronomical concepts and mysterious cosmic phenomena in a tone and accessible language that most readers can grasp.

I am glad I have read his "Astrophysics for People in a Hurry". The title kind of indicates that it's written for a quick review of astrophysics. It's true, but it also gives an illuminating glimpse of our mysterious universe and an urgency, like the word "hurry" to have some sense of our very existence.

From the very start, the 0th time of big bang to all the way of 21st century's era of technological marvels, Tyson gives a good synopsis on how everything came about that surround us every moment but most of us remain oblivious to its origin. Tyson has a good point why most human beings do not have the time or the resource to ponder about the magnificent cosmos:
"But who gets to think that way? Who gets to celebrate this cosmic view of life? Not the migrant farmworker. Not the sweatshop worker. Certainly not the homeless person rummaging through the trash for food. You need the luxury of time not spent on mere survival. You need to live in a nation whose government values the search to understand humanity’s place in the universe. You need a society in which intellectual pursuit can take you to the frontiers of discovery, and in which news of your discoveries can be routinely disseminated.” 
And he has good observation of our limited perspectives, just like the inexperienced and immature children do:
"Consider an adult who tends to the traumas of a child: spilled milk, a broken toy, a scraped knee. As adults we know that kids have no clue of what constitutes a genuine problem, because inexperience greatly limits their childhood perspective. Children do not yet know that the world doesn’t revolve around them. As grown-ups, dare we admit to ourselves that we, too, have a collective immaturity of view? Dare we admit that our thoughts and behaviors spring from a belief that the world revolves around us? Apparently not. Yet evidence abounds. Part the curtains of society’s racial, ethnic, religious, national, and cultural conflicts, and you find the human ego turning the knobs and pulling the levers. Now imagine a world in which everyone, but especially people with power and influence, holds an expanded view of our place in the cosmos. With that perspective, our problems would shrink—or never arise at all—and we could celebrate our earthly differences while shunning the behavior of our predecessors who slaughtered one another because of them."
Our existence as the part of the individual human consciousness is limited. But that should not stop us exploring this massive universe, of which we only know the minute fractions of its wonders. Tyson explains why it's absolutely necessary to know:
"The day our knowledge of the cosmos ceases to expand, we risk regressing to the childish view that the universe figuratively and literally revolves around us. In that bleak world, arms-bearing, resource-hungry people and nations would be prone to act on their 'low contracted prejudices.' And that would be the last gasp of human enlightenment - until the rise of a visionary new culture that could once again embrace, rather than fear, the cosmic perspective.” 
I love the simple way he explains how every atom in us, "is traceable to the big bang and to the thermonuclear furnaces within high-mass stars that exploded more than five billion years ago.
We are stardust brought to life, then empowered by the universe to figure itself out - and we have only just begun.” 

And a lot to explore for sure when our current understanding of cosmos brought us to measure mere 5 percent of regular matter, while 68 percent mass-energy in the universe is attributed to dark energy and 27 percent is set aside for dark matter.  In plain language, we still have to figure out 95% of the universe like we have the 5%. We remain a child in the matter of cosmic realm.