BOOK BITES | Un-su Kim, Stephen Hawking

A fast-paced thriller about assassins and Stephen Hawking's Brief Answers to the Big Questions - here's what we recommend this week

12 March 2019 - 10:33

Published in the Sunday Times (March 10, 2019)

The Plotters *****
Un-su Kim, 4th Estate, R305

A fast-paced, gripping read, despite being about assassins. This is because Reseng, our hero/anti-hero, who was born in a dumpster and raised in Seoul's Doghouse Library, has deep philosophical thoughts, loves cats, and treats his unique vocation as just a job. If he isn't paid to kill you, you're safe. If he is paid to kill you, he is polite about it, albeit ruthless. A turn of events, however, has him opening a Pandora's box when he starts questioning the role of his faceless bosses. Tiah Beautement @ms_tiahmarie

Brief Answers to the Big Questions *****
Stephen Hawking, John Murray, R330

Whether you're a fan of Stephen Hawking or just want to add this volume to your collection to impress your friends, it's a buy you won't regret. It's been called his parting gift to humanity and was his final book before his death in March last year. Controversial and inspirational, Hawking writes matter of factly about a range of issues including God, the black hole and time travel. It's his final message, of hope, that is most meaningful: "However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at. It matters that you don't just give up. Unleash your imagination. Shape the future." Jessica Levitt @jesslevitt