Why put together a reading list of the best physics books for beginners? Physics is a fundamental science that helps us understand the workings of the universe. It explains how everything from the smallest particles to the largest galaxies behaves and interacts. For many people, physics is a challenging and daunting subject. However, it is also incredibly rewarding to study. Understanding the principles of physics can help us understand the world around us and make sense of everyday phenomena.

For those who are new to the subject, it can be difficult to know where to start. There are many books available that claim to be the best introduction to physics, but not all of them are suitable for beginners. The best physics books for beginners are those that provide a clear and accessible introduction to the subject, without overwhelming the reader with complex mathematics and jargon. These books are designed to help readers develop a solid foundation in physics, and to understand the key concepts and principles that underpin the subject.

Whether you’re a student looking to study physics at a higher level, or simply someone who is interested in the subject, these books are an excellent starting point. They will help you understand the basics of physics and provide you with the knowledge and skills you need to explore the subject in more depth. With clear explanations and engaging examples, these books make physics accessible and enjoyable for anyone who wants to learn more about this fascinating subject.

Here are the best physics books for beginners…


Basic Physics: A Self-Teaching Guide by Karl F. Kuhn and Frank Noschese

Basic Physics: A Self-Teaching Guide, 3rd Edition, is the perfect guide for anyone looking to learn the basics of physics at their own pace. Written by expert authors Karl F. Kuhn and Frank Noschese, this book is designed to be reader-friendly and easy to understand, making it the ideal choice for beginners.

The book covers a wide range of topics in physics, including Newton’s Laws, energy, electricity, magnetism, light, and sound. Each concept is presented in clear, easy-to-digest terms, making it accessible to even those who have never studied physics before. For those who are interested in a deeper understanding of the math behind each concept, the book also includes sections that explain the math in more detail.

The third edition of this book reflects and implements new, research-based methods on how people best learn new material. Each chapter includes a list of objectives, test questions, and exercises that inspire deeper learning about physics. This makes it an ideal choice for high school students, college students, and those who are re-learning physics.

Overall, Basic Physics: A Self-Teaching Guide, 3rd Edition, offers a flexible and interactive approach to learning physics that is backed by research. With its clear explanations, practical examples, and engaging exercises, this book is the perfect guide for anyone looking to understand the basics of physics. Whether you’re a student or simply someone who is interested in the subject, this book will help you develop a solid foundation in physics and provide you with the knowledge and skills you need to explore the subject in more depth.

Seven Brief Lessons on Physics by Carlo Rovelli

Seven Brief Lessons on Physics by Carlo Rovelli is a beautifully written and accessible introduction to the world of physics. Written by a renowned theoretical physicist, the book provides a clear and concise overview of some of the most important and fascinating concepts in modern physics. Through seven brief and engaging lessons, the author takes readers on a journey through the vast expanse of space and time, exploring the mysteries of the universe and the nature of reality.

The book covers a wide range of topics in physics, including Einstein’s general relativity, quantum mechanics, elementary particles, gravity, black holes, and the complex architecture of the universe. Written in a clear and easy-to-understand style, the author makes complex concepts accessible to even those who have never studied physics before. The book also provides a philosophical and poetic perspective on the subject matter, making it a captivating and thought-provoking read.

One of the reasons why this book is one of the best physics books for beginners is that it is written in a highly engaging and entertaining style, making it accessible and interesting for anyone who is curious about the subject. It is also a short and concise book, making it easy for beginners to digest the material. The author’s way of explaining complex concepts in simple terms is also a major plus for beginners who might struggle with heavy mathematical explanations. Additionally, the author’s philosophical perspective on the subject matter makes it a captivating and thought-provoking read.

Overall, Seven Brief Lessons on Physics is a highly recommended book for anyone looking to gain a deeper understanding of the subject matter. Whether you’re a student, a curious reader, or simply someone who wants to learn more about the world around you, this book is an excellent starting point. It provides a clear and concise introduction to the subject matter, while also being entertaining and engaging, making it one of the best physics books for beginners.

The Cartoon Guide to Physics by Larry Gonick

The Cartoon Guide to Physics by Larry Gonick is an innovative and entertaining introduction to the complex world of physics. Written in a humorous and easy-to-understand style, this book uses simple illustrations and clear explanations to make even the most difficult concepts accessible to anyone.

The book covers a wide range of topics in physics, including velocity, acceleration, explosions, electricity and magnetism, circuits, and even a taste of relativity theory. Each concept is presented in a clear and humorous way, making it easy for readers to understand and retain the information. The book is also designed to be interactive, with questions and exercises throughout to help readers test their understanding of the material.

One of the reasons why this book is one of the best physics books for beginners is that it presents complex physics concepts in a way that is easy to understand and retain. The book’s use of humor and illustrations makes it an engaging and entertaining read, which is beneficial for beginners who may find the subject matter intimidating. Additionally, the book’s interactive design with questions and exercises helps readers test their understanding and retain the information.

Overall, The Cartoon Guide to Physics is a highly recommended book for anyone looking to gain a deeper understanding of the subject matter. Whether you’re a student, a curious reader, or simply someone who wants to learn more about the world around you, this book is an excellent starting point. It provides a clear and concise introduction to the subject matter, while also being entertaining and engaging, making it one of the best physics books for beginners.

The Physics Book by DK

The Physics Book, part of the Big Ideas series, is an overview guide to the subject of physics that is perfect for both beginners and experts. The book covers a wide range of topics in physics, including the Big Bang theory, astrophysics, and gravity, and presents them in a clear and easy-to-follow format. The Physics Book is designed to make the complex concepts of physics accessible to anyone, regardless of their level of understanding.

The book features over 100 groundbreaking ideas in the field of physics, along with charts, timelines, and graphs to help explain core concepts. The book’s visual approach to big subjects with striking illustrations and graphics throughout make it an immersive and captivating read. The text is easy to follow and makes the topics accessible for people at any level of understanding.

The Physics Book is the perfect introduction to the science of physics, aimed at adults with an interest in the subject and students wanting to gain a broader overview. Here you’ll discover more than 90 of the most important laws and theories in the history of physics and the great minds behind them. The book covers key information in a clear layout, making it easy to understand how physicists formulated and proved groundbreaking abstract concepts. If you’ve ever wondered how magnets generate electricity, what antimatter is, or if time travel is possible, The Physics Book is the perfect guide to help you understand these complex concepts.

Six Easy Pieces: Essentials of Physics Explained by Its Most Brilliant Teacher by Richard P. Feynman

Six Easy Pieces: Essentials of Physics Explained by Its Most Brilliant Teacher, written by Nobel laureate Richard P. Feynman, is a collection of six classic and beloved lessons on physics. The book is based on the lectures that Feynman delivered at the California Institute of Technology from 1961 to 1963, which revolutionized the teaching of physics around the world. The book covers six fundamental topics in physics: atoms, basic physics, energy, gravitation, quantum mechanics, and the relationship of physics to other topics.

Feynman was known for his outrageous and scintillating method of teaching, and this book is no exception. He presents each discussion with a minimum of jargon, making it accessible for the general reader. The book is filled with wonderful examples and clever illustrations that help to explain complex concepts in a simple and easy-to-understand way.

Feynman is considered one of the greatest minds of the twentieth century and is admired for his ability to make physics accessible to people at any level of understanding. Six Easy Pieces is the ideal introduction to the fundamentals of physics by one of the most admired and accessible physicists of modern times. With its accessible language, examples, and illustrations, the book makes it easy for readers to grasp the concepts and understand how to think like a physicist. As John Gribbin said in New Scientist, “If one book was all that could be passed on to the next generation of scientists it would undoubtedly have to be Six Easy Pieces.”

In Search of Schrodinger’s Cat by John Gribbin

In Search of Schrodinger’s Cat by John Gribbin is a comprehensive and compelling guide to the world of quantum mechanics. The book delves into the fundamental principles of quantum theory and explains the impact it has on modern science and technology. From nuclear power and weapons, to TV, computers, molecular biology, DNA, and genetic engineering, quantum theory is the underlying foundation of many modern scientific advancements.

The author takes readers on a journey through the history of quantum mechanics and introduces the pioneering scientists who developed it. He investigates the intricacies of the atom, radiation, time travel, the birth of the universe, superconductors, and even life itself. Through clear explanations and relatable examples, the author guides readers through the often bewildering world of quantum mechanics and the search for Schrodinger’s Cat, a symbol of quantum reality.

This book is a must-read for anyone looking to gain a better understanding of the world around them. Whether you’re a student, a curious reader, or simply someone who wants to learn more about the science of today, In Search of Schrodinger’s Cat is an accessible and fascinating introduction to the strange world of quantum physics. The book’s engaging style and relatable examples make it easy for readers of all backgrounds to grasp the concepts and understand the importance of quantum mechanics in today’s world.

50 Physics Idea You Really Need to Know by Joanne Baker

50 Physics Ideas You Really Need to Know by Joanne Baker is an accessible and comprehensive guide to the world of physics. The book covers a wide range of topics, from historic breakthroughs in human understanding of the physical world to the complexities of modern scientific theory. The author provides clear explanations of key concepts, from Kepler’s law of planetary motion and Newton’s law of gravitation to Planck’s law, Pauli’s exclusion principle, Schrondinger’s cat, and string theory.

The book is designed to be a starting point for anyone new to the subject of physics. The author’s clear and concise writing style makes the subject matter accessible to readers of all backgrounds. The book is also accompanied by a range of useful editorial features, including biographies of iconic physicists, timelines of related ideas, explanatory diagrams, and display quotations. These features provide context and additional information that help to clarify and reinforce the concepts presented in the text.

One of the reasons why this book is a good place to start for someone new to the subject of physics is that it presents a wide range of topics in a clear and concise way. The author’s writing style is engaging and easy to understand, making it accessible for people at any level of understanding. Additionally, the book’s editorial features, such as biographies, timelines, diagrams, and quotations, provide context and additional information that help to clarify and reinforce the concepts presented in the text. Overall, 50 Physics Ideas You Really Need to Know is an excellent starting point for anyone looking to gain a deeper understanding of the subject matter.

Teach Yourself Physics by Jakob Schwichtenberg

Teach Yourself Physics by Jakob Schwichtenberg is a comprehensive handbook designed to help readers develop a deep understanding of physics through self-learning. The author, a physicist himself, provides a unique perspective on the subject matter and offers advice and recommendations based on his own experiences. The book is not a career guide or a comprehensive textbook, but rather a guide to help readers navigate the world of physics on their own terms.

The book covers a wide range of topics, including the reasons why self-learning is an effective strategy, the internal structure of physics, and an understanding of the landscape of the subject matter. The author provides detailed reading and learning recommendations that allow readers to carve out a personal learning path. He also explains why most university students never develop a deep understanding of physics and presents alternative methods of learning.

One of the strengths of this book is that it is written by a physicist who has a deep understanding of the subject matter. The author provides a unique perspective on the subject and offers advice and recommendations based on his own experiences. Additionally, the book’s focus on self-learning and its detailed reading and learning recommendations make it an accessible and flexible guide for anyone looking to gain a deeper understanding of physics.

Thinking Physics: Understandable Practical Reality by Lewis Carroll Epstein

Thinking Physics: Understandable Practical Reality by Lewis Carroll Epstein is an excellent starting point for anyone new to the subject of physics. The book presents complex physics concepts in a way that is easy to understand for the layperson, making it a perfect beginner’s guide. Epstein’s writing style is engaging and approachable, making the topic of physics more accessible to a wider audience. He covers a wide range of physics-related questions, including familiar but misunderstood concepts like wing lift and tides, as well as more obscure but fascinating phenomena like the “Bernoulli sub” and the “artificial aurora” created by hydrogen bombs.

The book is broken into many short sections and is illustrated with Epstein’s own playful hand-drawn illustrations. This makes it easy to read and navigate, allowing readers to quickly find the information they need. Additionally, Epstein not only provides the correct answers to the questions he covers but also goes into the answers that seem right but are wrong, and explains why they are incorrect. This is a rarity in science books and makes the book more valuable for readers looking to deepen their understanding of physics.

Overall, Thinking Physics is a rigorously correct, lighthearted, and cleverly designed Q and A book for physicists of all ages. It is a great resource for science teachers and students, as well as anyone with an interest in physics. Epstein’s approachable writing style and clear explanations make it a valuable resource for anyone looking to learn more about the subject.

Surely You’re Joking Mr. Feynman by Richard P. Feynman

Surely You’re Joking Mr. Feynman by Richard P. Feynman is a national bestseller that has become one of the most famous science books of our time. Written by the winner of the Nobel Prize in physics, the book is a lively and engaging read that offers a glimpse into the life of one of the most renowned scientists of our time. The book is filled with anecdotes and stories that showcase Feynman’s intelligence, curiosity, and eccentricity, as well as his many adventures, including trading ideas on atomic physics with Einstein and cracking the uncrackable safes guarding the most deeply held nuclear secrets.

One of the things that makes this book stand out is Feynman’s ability to shatter the stereotype of the stuffy scientist. His writing is filled with energy and life, and his stories are both entertaining and informative. The book is a great way to learn about physics and the scientific method in a way that is both approachable and enjoyable. It is a great resource for anyone looking to learn more about the subject, including students, science teachers, and anyone with an interest in physics.

This edition of the book includes a new introduction by Bill Gates, adding an additional perspective to the book. It is a perfect starting point for someone new to the subject of physics, as it provides a unique and entertaining introduction to the subject. The book is a great way to learn about physics in a way that is both entertaining and informative, making it a valuable resource for anyone interested in the subject.

Expert Opinion

Mete Atature, Professor of Physics at Cambridge University

Surely You’re Joking, Mr Feynman! by Richard Feynman is the book that has the biggest impact on my life. His approach to life and his science made me think that science is not for a particular stereotype and any kid with a genuine interest in figuring things out could be a scientist and even a good one too!


What’s Physics?

Physics is the natural science that studies matter and its motion, as well as space and time. It is the branch of science concerned with the physical properties and interactions of matter and energy, and it encompasses a wide range of phenomena from the very large, such as galaxies and black holes, to the very small, such as subatomic particles. The goal of physics is to understand the underlying laws that govern the behavior of the natural world, and it is often divided into several branches, including classical physics, which deals with the properties of matter and energy on a macroscopic scale, and quantum physics, which deals with the properties of matter and energy on a microscopic scale. Physics also includes branches like thermodynamics, optics, electromagnetism, and nuclear physics.

Books about Physics

A book about physics that is well-suited for beginners should be written in an easy-to-understand style and use simple language that can be understood by someone with little prior knowledge of the subject. It should be well-organized and have a logical structure that makes it easy for readers to follow along. The book should have plenty of diagrams, illustrations, and pictures to help explain complex concepts and make them more accessible to beginners. It should also provide plenty of examples to help readers understand the concepts being discussed. These examples should be relevant and relatable to the reader’s everyday life.

Additionally, the book should include additional resources like quizzes, review questions, and suggested further readings to help readers to test their understanding and to deepen their knowledge. It is also good to know about the author’s credentials and background in physics, to ensure that the book is written by a qualified and experienced expert in the field. Furthermore, it is always helpful to check the reviews and feedbacks of the book you want to read, to understand the readers’ perspectives and to make sure the book aligns with your learning style.


If you enjoyed this reading list of the best physics books for beginners, you may also want to check out our list of the best books on astronomy.