Written by Jared Diamond. Global human history in ~500 pgs, complete with plausible explanation of why contemporary global power balance is the way it is. Why Europe has conquered the world despite the ~000 year head start enjoyed by China and the middle east, why the Americas (indigenous, man), Africa, and Australia never had a good chance, etc. Interesting, and plausible, if you allow the global generalizations he indulges (which are generally palatable). Touches upon chaos theory a very wee bit too, in the closing chapters.
Considered by most modern historians to be utter bullshit, but still an interesting read.