Even though we are all different in our own ways, we all have an underlying thread in common: our evolution, our history. However, only roughly 0.0001 % of the Earth’s whole history has been occupied by human beings with behaviorally contemporary traits. We are, in fact, right at the start of everything. Yet, in order to survive even for such a short period of time, a seemingly unending line of fortunate events was necessary. But what were these fortunate events? How did Homo sapiens get here after many billion years and virtually infinite evolutionary crossroads? How did humankind ultimately conquer the world? And how did life emerge in the first place? In this epic and compelling story, Gerard Alexander Willighagen strives to answer these and many more intriguing questions by taking you through space and time to explore the origins of life, the evolution and rise of Homo sapiens, the dawn and development of civilization, and the emergence and formation of the modern world we know today. In the process of meandering through this multi-billion-year story, we’ll come to appreciate the incredible good fortune that all living organisms, including our own highly evolved yet essentially Stone Age-wired species, have of just simply existing. So, let’s take a huge step back in time—right at the initial steps of life—to ponder how exceptional our story truly is. However, as a short sneak peek in advance: our story is indeed exceptional, notable, and utterly captivating.