Based on the newly released personal letters of Albert Einstein, Walter Isaacson explores how an imaginative, impertinent patent clerk, a struggling father in a difficult marriage who couldn't get a teaching job or a doctorate, became the mind reader of the creator of the cosmos, the locksmith of the mysteries of the atom and the universe. His success came from questioning conventional wisdom and marveling at mysteries that struck others as mundane. This led him to embrace a morality and politics based on respect for free minds, free spirits, and free individuals.
These traits are just as vital for this new century of globalization, in which our success will depend on our creativity, as they were for the beginning of the last century, when Einstein helped usher in the modern age.
It's all relative: listen to more about Albert Einstein.
©2007 Walter Isaacson. All rights reserved; (P)2007 Simon and Schuster Inc. All rights reserved.
"[A] lucid account." (Publishers Weekly)
"Isaacson has admirably succeeded in weaving together the complex threads of Einstein's personal and scientific life to paint a superb portrait." (Arthur I. Miller, author of Einstein, Picasso)
"Isaacson has written a crisp, engaging, and refreshing biography, one that beautifully masters the historical literature and offers many new insights into Einstein's work and life." (Diana Kormos Buchwald, General Editor of the Collected Papers of Albert Einstein)
Interesting Incredible story
Einstein. Because he is Einstein.
Edward Herrmann reads the story as though he was there (which I guess Mr. Isaacson deserves credit for). But Mr. Herrmann certainly reads as though he was there, and wrote the material. So there.
Moved is a strong word. This is a biography about a physicist.
Listen. You will like it.
You learn a whole lot in this book: about Einstein's life, his personality, the historical context in which he lived, the scientific community of the time, and very importantly about Einstein's scientific findings. Those are explained in depth, and the author often tries to use very simple comparisons and explanations to make the reader understand. But since relativity, when Einstein came up with it, was a mystery even to many scientists, a non-scientist reader will likely be left wondering during many parts of this book.
The science in the book may be easier to understand if one can read slowly at times, go back and reread, stop and contemplate. But that's just not what you usually do with an audiobook. It's a great book to listen to if you're prepared to be a little confused in exchange for learning a whole lot of stuff.
I generally listen to audiobooks when I run, so I listen in small chunks (30-40 mins or so) and I may skip a day or two. With some audiobooks, particularly long biographies, I lose track of where I am in the narrative if I take a couple of days off and have to backtrack a few minutes to remember the context (or just as often, I get bored and move on to a new book).
I'm about halfway through this book and I haven't backtracked once. The writing is so engaging and each person is so clearly defined I feel like I've gotten to know Einstein and the people in his life. I even listen when I'm working around the house or yard, not something I typically do. Even when Isaacson is discussing Einstein's theories the pace of the narration keeps me engaged and isn't technical enough to lose me. Edward Herrmann might be the best narrator I've ever heard. His German pronunciation is lovely, his pacing is perfect and his voice is soothing. I'm very glad I purchased this.
The insights into Einstein's life.
The great physicisist himself. I think the author does a terrific job at providing an image of Einstein that is very human, with nice and not so nice sides.
I had trouble with the narrator's performance. After a while he sounded (to me)....detached? Sort of like the narrators in WWII American proaganda.
Overall, I am happy I listened to this audiobook. Kept me busy in my walks for quite some time. I do recommend it.
Having never taken a physics class a lot of the theory and life's work of Albert Einstein went over my head. In fact a lot of this book did. What I will say though that Walter Isaacson did an incredible job of bringing the whole life personal/professional into a nice clean package.
There are some real dry spells in this biography, in fact I would go as far as to say that the abridged version might have been a better idea for me. However if you are at all fascinated by the Einstein and want to learn what made him tick this is a great book for you.
That they did not shy away from describing basic technical concepts.
Einsteins life. sdfd
I enjoyed the many ups and downs of man that has made such an impact on society with little said of his true life from beginning to end. The narrator did an excellent job of keeping the book interesting for most of the book. The somewhat monotone narrative made the book much easier to understand; while still giving emotion to the story.
Clearly understandablesubtle emotiona calming and easy to listen to voice
With Great power comes great complexity!
Not only it's a biography of one of the most notable people of the last century, but it's a very interesting look at the development of physics leading up to the atomic bomb.
It also covers quite a bit of science history and many notable scientists for that period since Einstein was in a middle of much of it. All this with a backdrop of late 19th/early 20h centuries, word war one, word war two, and the postwar America. Add in some surprising influence of philosophy on Einstein's thinking and even the politics he was involved in and I found to be very interesting and captivating reading.
I enjoy the spy type story. So for me to enjoy this speak volumes. It was nice to hear about his struggles and successes...
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