Matthew Walker is a professor of neuroscience and psychology at UC Berkeley, the Director of its Sleep and Neuroimaging Lab, and a former professor of psychiatry at Harvard University. He has published over 100 scientific studies and has appeared on 60 Minutes, Nova, BBC News, and NPR's Science Friday. Why We Sleep is his first book.
"A thoughtful tour through the still dimly understood state of
being asleep ... Why We Sleep is a book on a mission. Walker
is in love with sleep and wants us to fall in love with sleep, too.
And it is urgent. He makes the argument, persuasively, that we are
in the midst of a 'silent sleep loss epidemic' that poses 'the
greatest public health challenge we face in the 21st century' ...
Why We Sleep mounts a persuasive, exuberant case for
addressing our societal sleep deficit and for the virtues of sleep
itself. It is recommended for night-table reading in the most
--New York Times Book Review
"The director of UC Berkeley's Sleep and Neuroimaging Lab explores the purpose of slumber. Understanding the 'why, ' it turns out, just might help you with the 'how to.'"
"A neuroscientist has found a revolutionary way of being cleverer, more attractive, slimmer, happier, healthier and of warding off cancer -- a good night's shut-eye ... It's probably a little too soon to tell you that Why We Sleep saved my life, but I can tell you that it's been an eye-opener."
"This is a stimulating and important book which you should read in the knowledge that the author is, as he puts it, 'in love with everything that sleep is and does.' But please do not begin it just before bedtime."
"Fascinating ... Walker describes how our resting habits have changed throughout history; the connection between sleep, chronic disease, and life span; and why the pills and aids we use to sleep longer and deeper are actually making our nights worse. Most important, he gives us simple, actionable ways to get better rest--tonight."
"Walker is a scientist but writes for the layperson, illustrating tricky concepts with easily grasped analogies. Of particular interest to business owners, educators, parents, and government officials, and anyone who has ever suffered from a poor night's sleep."
--Library Journal, starred review
"Why We Sleep is simply a must-read. World-renowned neuroscientist and sleep expert Matthew Walker takes us on a fascinating and indispensable journey into the latest understandings of the science of sleep. And the book goes way beyond satisfying intellectual curiosity, as it explores the cognitive, health, safety and business consequences of compromising the quality and quantity of our sleep; insights that may change the way you live your life. In these super-charged, distracting times it is hard to think of a book that is more important to read than this one."
--Adam Gazzaley, co-author of The Distracted Mind, founder and executive director of Neuroscape, and Professor of Neurology, Physiology, and Psychiatry at University of California, San Francisco
"Most of us have no idea what we do with a third of our lives.
In this lucid and engaging book, Matt Walker explains the new
science that is rapidly solving this age-old mystery. Why We
Sleep is a canny pleasure that will have you turning pages well
past your bedtime."
--Daniel Gilbert, professor of psychology at Harvard and author of Stumbling on Happiness "In Why We Sleep, Dr. Matt Walker brilliantly illuminates the night, explaining how sleep can make us healthier, safer, smarter, and more productive. Clearly and definitively, he provides knowledge and strategies to overcome the life-threatening risks associated with our sleep-deprived society. Our universal need for sleep ensures that every reader will find value in Dr. Walker's insightful counsel."
--Mark R. Rosekind, Ph.D., former NHTSA Administrator, NTSB member, and NASA scientist