Few writers living during the past one-hundred years are as succinct and clear as the late, great Isaac Asimov. His science essays are legendary—even when, 26 years after his death, they’re somewhat dated. If you strive to write non-fiction well—or science fiction, for that matter—his massive catalog is must-reading. Asimov’s ability to make complex topics understandable will by exposure improve your tradecraft.
Three days ago, I received from Thriftbooks, via Amazon, a used copy of Asimov on Astronomy, which was cherished reading during my senior year of high school. Spring of 1977, on a bulletin board featuring photos that didn’t make the yearbook was a pic of me sitting cross-legged in the school library reading the paperback. That’s a candid portrait I would like to have. Finding, and buying, a copy of the book is almost good enough: Asimov’s writing is so refreshingly crisp, lively, and personal.