Review: Randall Munroe - what if? Serious Scientific Questions to Absurd Hypothetical Questions

I have been a fan of xkcd for quite some time. A lot of Randall Munroe’s comics concern IT and technology jokes, and I’m always in for that! On his website, he also has a “what if” inbox. Here, he allows people to ask absurd hypothetical questions which he will answer as seriously as possible. And then he went and made a book of those questions and answers!

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I enjoyed What If. Because, as you might know by now, I like tech humour. Also, it’s just well written and has this sort of vibe to it. It reads easy even though there’s a lot of technicalities explaining certain physical and chemical aspects.

Randall Munroe thought me a lot of things with this book, like why there’s fire in front of a space shuttle when it comes back into orbit. While deepening into some of the aforementioned technicalities, Munroe succeeds at adding funny jokes and keeping your attention. He proves to be a great writer. He does a good job at coming back on certain elements he already discussed before. That way, he can link his questions together.


Even though this book has no real story, you still want to read all of it. But since there’s no real story in it, I cannot give it as high a rating as other books I’ve read. But hey, four stars ain’t bad, right?

Have you read What if? What did you think of it? Did you enjoy the weird and worrying questions as well? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!