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Steve Jobs | [Walter Isaacson]

Steve Jobs

Based on more than 40 interviews with Jobs conducted over two years—as well as interviews with more than a hundred family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, and colleagues—Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - Much has been written about Apple’s late CEO and co-founder Steve Jobs, but Walter Isaacson’s definitive bio is the only one authorized by Jobs himself. Based on interviews with Jobs and the people closest to him – including his wife and kids – this is an honest, revealing look at one of the greatest innovators of our time (and revolutionaries in the way we listen to books). — Diana M.

Publisher's Summary

Featuring a new epilogue read by the author.

From the author of the best-selling biographies of Benjamin Franklin and Albert Einstein, this is the exclusive biography of Steve Jobs.

Based on more than 40 interviews with Jobs conducted over two years - as well as interviews with more than a hundred family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, and colleagues - Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.

At a time when America is seeking ways to sustain its innovative edge, and when societies around the world are trying to build digital-age economies, Jobs stands as the ultimate icon of inventiveness and applied imagination. He knew that the best way to create value in the 21st century was to connect creativity with technology. He built a company where leaps of the imagination were combined with remarkable feats of engineering.

Although Jobs cooperated with this book, he asked for no control over what was written. He put nothing off-limits. He encouraged the people he knew to speak honestly. And Jobs speaks candidly, sometimes brutally so, about the people he worked with and competed against. His friends, foes, and colleagues provide an unvarnished view of the passions, perfectionism, obsessions, artistry, devilry, and compulsion for control that shaped his approach to business and the innovative products that resulted.

Driven by demons, Jobs could drive those around him to fury and despair. But his personality and products were interrelated, just as Apple's hardware and software tended to be, as if part of an integrated system. His tale is instructive and cautionary, filled with lessons about innovation, character, leadership, and values.

©2011 Walter Isaacson (P)2011 Simon & Schuster

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (13394 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Cole Maryville, TN, United States 05-02-12
    Cole Maryville, TN, United States 05-02-12 Member Since 2010

    I am a 34-year old litigator, father of three young sons. I listen to a lot of business books, suspense/thrillers, bios, and history.

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    "As good as biography gets..."

    This is pretty much as good as biography gets, in my opinion. Apart from the fact that Steve Jobs would certainly have been an interesting subject, Walter Isaacson is just a damn good biographer. Fascinating story. I also learned a lot, as I had hoped I would.

    Along with Martin Sherwin's and Kai Bird's book on Robert Oppenheimer, David McCullough's biography of Truman, and Mornings on Horseback, this is among the most memorable biographies I have read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Thomas San Jose, CA, United States 05-01-12
    Thomas San Jose, CA, United States 05-01-12 Member Since 2013
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    "Little long and repeats a couple of facts"

    The book is a little long and does jump forward and backwards in time and so repeats a couple facts. Overall I felt the book was a great insight into Steve Jobs and Apple.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Thomas San Jose, CA, United States 05-01-12
    Thomas San Jose, CA, United States 05-01-12 Member Since 2013
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    "Little long and repeats a couple of facts"

    The book is a little long and does jump forward and backwards in time and so repeats a couple facts. Overall I felt the book was a great insight into Steve Jobs and Apple.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brian 05-01-12
    Brian 05-01-12 Member Since 2002
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    "What a man!"

    Love him or hate him, this story shows why Apple was so successful. The world can only handle just a few of his type though.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joan Lombard, IL, United States 05-01-12
    Joan Lombard, IL, United States 05-01-12 Member Since 2011
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    "I loved this book."
    What made the experience of listening to Steve Jobs the most enjoyable?

    This is current to me. I am a computer teacher and saw firsthand many of the Jobs miracles over these years. The book helped me see Steve as a human being, up close and personal. I also "met" the other Silicon Valley personages Steve reacted with. I did not realize he was a pretty good friend of Bill Gates.

    Mr. Isaacson has a wonderful ability to turn a phrase so that it made me chuckle. For example, one of Steve's stock phrases at a product introduction was "There is one more thing." Isaacson's last pages started with the same phrase.

    Every time I pass an Apple store, it makes me proud.


    What other book might you compare Steve Jobs to and why?

    One aspect of Isaacson's story was that the problem child in school often ends up the whiz kid in life. I saw this theme repeated in several of my recent readings: Unbroken and Townie, just to name a few.


    Which character – as performed by Dylan Baker – was your favorite?

    Undoubtedly....Steve Jobs. I wish I had more of an opportunity to know Laurene Powell better.

    Steve spoke almost reverently of his adopted father too.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    This book made me do both. It made me like Steve Jobs immensely, and I think I am going to miss him. I don't think I would have made his "A list" of people though. I don't have the smarts, the creativity, and the self-confidence to blare my opinions to one and all. Personally, I am more like his middle daughter.


    Any additional comments?

    Thank you to Mr. Isaacson for the opportunity of this book. I am going to read some of your others, maybe the one on Benjamin Franklin.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paul Gilroy, CA, United States 04-28-12
    Paul Gilroy, CA, United States 04-28-12 Member Since 2010

    Cosmic Dreamer

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    "Great Story - could be a better performance"

    The threads of the story of Steve Jobs intertwines with the fabric of our lives. If that sounds like an overstatement maybe its because I live and work in Silicon Valley. This story does not pull any jobs. It is far from being a puff piece. I know that Steve Jobs was a prickly personality and that is very clear from this book. But nothing is left out - not his family interactions, not the products, not the conflicts with John Scully and many others. It's all here.
    I would only give 4 stars at most for performance when the author does not read the book. I think having someone else read it causes some sections to sound more repetitive than necessary. I deducted one more star for failing to see an obvious way to improve the audio version. Many quotes from Steve Jobs are available on Youtube clips and it would be great if some clips of Jobs talking could be incorporated into the book.
    That said, there are a few times when the material is repeated but for a good reason. A family trip to Hawaii is discussed once in terms of fixing a problem in the iPhone and then again in a section discussing family interactions.
    But clearly this audio book was well worth the investment - moneywise and timewise.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cindy Woodland, CA, USA 04-28-12
    Cindy Woodland, CA, USA 04-28-12 Member Since 2014
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    "Fascinating But Repetitive"

    I love Apple and I find Steve Jobs to be an icon of our times. The book was a fascinating read -- especially the first part about forming Apple. But this book needed some serious editing. It feels like it was rushed to press. I found it to be quite repetitive since it often repeated some of the same stories numerous times.

    (WARNING: SPOILER ALERT) Also, I was disappointed that the book ended without mentioning Jobs' death. That would have given the book the closure that it desperately needed rather than ending what was probably only about a month before his death.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Elaine Stormville, NY, United States 04-28-12
    Elaine Stormville, NY, United States 04-28-12 Member Since 2008
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    "It lived up to its reputation."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Definitely a great book. An in depth view of a complex man. I enjoyed listening to it and it kept my attention throughout. I highly recommend it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    E. A. New York State 04-28-12
    E. A. New York State 04-28-12 Member Since 2008
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    "It lived up to its reputation."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Definitely a great book. An in depth view of a complex man. I enjoyed listening to it and it kept my attention throughout. I highly recommend it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    L. webb 04-25-12
    L. webb 04-25-12
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    "Business negotiation as world-changing drama"
    Would you listen to Steve Jobs again? Why?

    Not for awhile. At this point I feel I know the man better than most people I'm actually acquainted with. Should probably focus on them after disappearing into this book with the consuming obsessiveness as Steve Jobs with a next-generation iPod.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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