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Superhuman

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Superhuman by Hooper, Rowan, 9781501168710
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  • ISBN: 9781501168710 | 1501168711
  • Cover: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 9/4/2018
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From evolutionary biologist Rowan Hooper, an awe-inspiring look into the extremes of human ability—and what they tell us about our own potential.

In 1997, Yiannis Kouros ran 188 miles in twenty-four hours. In 1984, at age forty-two, Maria Moreira gave birth to her tenth set of twins. In 1973, Terry Tao learned to read when he was two years old. Tao started college at age nine, and at twenty-four was appointed a fulltime professor at UCLA. Janine Shepherd broke her arms, neck, and back after a truck smashed into her while cycling. It left her paralyzed from the waist down, and doctors gave her a slim chance for survival. She now routinely walks her three children to school.

What does it feel like to be exceptional? And what does it take to get there? Why can some people achieve greatness when others can’t, no matter how hard they try? Just how much potential does our species have? Evolutionary biologist Rowan Hooper has the answers. In Superhuman he takes us on a breathtaking tour of the peaks of human achievement that shows us what it feels like to be exceptional—and what it takes to get there.

Drawing on interviews with these “superhumans” and those who have studied them, Hooper assesses the science and genetics of peak potential. His case studies are as inspirational as they are varied, highlighting feats of endurance, strength, intelligence, and memory. They serve to address Hooper’s larger themes of humanity, including resilience, bravery, and happiness.

Ultimately, these seemingly outlandish stories are the story of humanity themselves. Superhuman is a fascinating, eye-opening, and inspiring celebration for anyone who ever felt that they might be able to do something extraordinary in life, for those who simply want to succeed, and for anyone interested in the sublime possibilities of humankind.

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