from io9

The 10 Books You Absolutely Must Read to Understand the History of Earth

by Annalee Newitz

The Earth is 4.5 billion years old, and life began oozing across its boiling, methane-saturated surface about a billion years after our planet was born.

But how did that happen?

In just a few billion years, a hellish ball of melted rock, smashed up by meteorites, became the gorgeous Blue Marble covered in plants, animals, and sparkling ocean waters we know today.

Here’s our list of ten books you must read if you want to understand this transformation, from the rise of oxygen in the atmosphere to the mass deaths of the dinosaurs.

[ click to read the list at ]