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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

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  •  
    Carolyn Proctorville, OH, United States 04-22-12
    Carolyn Proctorville, OH, United States 04-22-12 Member Since 2009

    70 year old grandmother of 2 teenagers. Still working in real estate appraisal field, live in OH and SC - spend time listening & traveling.

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    "Not what I was expecting!"
    Where does Steve Jobs rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    It was a great biography in that Jobs had input into the book but didn't censor it or dictate what could or could not be in the book. Lots more negative than I would have imagined. He was not a person I could have been friends with or worked for. Disloyal, verbally abusive, vain, hypocritical....but wait, I'll spoil it for the next listener!


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

    Can't think of any


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Dylan Baker?

    Yes, he was very good.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    If you thought Steve Jobs was a good guy - think again! His name should have been I-Steve because he only thought of himself (I-I-I-I) all of the time.


    Any additional comments?

    I'm not sure it was worth over 25 hours of listening!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    HELENE 04-20-12
    HELENE 04-20-12 Member Since 2012
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    "Love to hate him !"
    What made the experience of listening to Steve Jobs the most enjoyable?

    Great writing !
    Interesting story !


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

    You just can turn it off ! ! ! :-)


    Any additional comments?

    Most read now !

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Keith Union Grove, WI, United States 04-20-12
    Keith Union Grove, WI, United States 04-20-12 Member Since 2014
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    "So much to learn"
    What made the experience of listening to Steve Jobs the most enjoyable?

    Beyond learning about this incredible force in today's world, you also can learn a lot about how to manage life and people.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Steve Jobs?

    The period when he was iCEO and replaced the Board.


    What about Dylan Baker’s performance did you like?

    It felt as though it was the author sitting down and telling you the story, instead of someone reading another person's work.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Of Gods and Sh-theads


    Any additional comments?

    There are moments in the books where I wished I could have worked with/for Jobs. There were moments in the book where I thought "What a total ___hole this guy was.". Oddly enough there were some moments with both thoughts together.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Virginia OCONOMOWOC, WI, United States 04-20-12
    Virginia OCONOMOWOC, WI, United States 04-20-12 Member Since 2011
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    "A new perspective of Steve Jobs"
    Would you listen to Steve Jobs again? Why?

    Yes, there was so much that this man did in his life, yet at times I wondered wtf, what an a$$. It was such a twist to the vision I originally had of Jobs.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I learned where all my love for Apple came from.


    Any additional comments?

    A must read for Apple lovers & non-Apple lovers alike.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    dtomasi 04-19-12
    dtomasi 04-19-12

    Dave

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    "Best Book In A Long Time"
    If you could sum up Steve Jobs in three words, what would they be?

    The best book of a modern giant in our life time, it was a book I could not stop reading.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim Lake Forest, CA, United States 04-18-12
    Jim Lake Forest, CA, United States 04-18-12 Member Since 2013
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    "Wow! I needed to read this book. So do you!"

    If you thought Steve Jobs was this really cool guy and a great leader/motivator, you might be surprised, (like I was). If you thought he was a cold-hearted jerk who always had to have his way, you might not be as surprised.
    Walter Isaacson does a surprisingly great job writing this book, and presenting a total picture of who Steve Jobs really was. When, at the very beginning of the book, he says Jobs asked him to write this biography, red flags went up for me as I then expected it to be some white-washed, sanitized version that Jobs would approve before allowing it to be published. Not so. I was impressed with Jobs, that he didn't put any restrictions on the author as he gave him pretty much full access.

    Also, as a "raised on Windows" computer guy who has to work on Macs at my job every day, I finally get it. I now understand my love/hate relationship with Apple, Macs, my iPhone, and iTunes now that I sort of understand Jobs. It doesn't really lower my frustration level but at least I know why all things Apple have a tendency to both excite and frustrate me, and I now know who's responsible.

    I also now have a better understanding of the Apple disciples and why they don't mind drinking the Apple Kool-Aid all the time. I'm in no danger of ever becoming one though.

    Re-living that period of history (I'm 5 years older than Jobs, and the same age as Woz), as the author walked us through his life was great fun. The book overall is a great read, and it doesn't matter if you loved Jobs, or hated him, or had no opinion, I guarantee you will find support for that opinion and maybe even change your opinion somewhat after reading this book. Love him, or hate him, he did change the world, and it will do you good to find out how he did it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bill Fischer Zion, IL, United States 04-17-12
    Bill Fischer Zion, IL, United States 04-17-12 Member Since 2008

    An aging techno-geek trying to make sense of the social media world. A lover of Spy and Hard Sci-fi. LeCarre and Niven are my favorites.

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    "A brilliant look at a complicated genius"
    Would you listen to Steve Jobs again? Why?

    Yes... Not only did Isaacson show his talent as a biographer, but Baker's superb performance made it a joy to listen to.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Isaacson was obviously granted incredible access to Jobs and those around him. While he shows a genuine affection for the man, he manages to keep enough distance to unblinkingly reveal all sides on this complex man. So many of the apocryphal stories around Jobs are either revealed in their true light or proven to be just legend.


    What does Dylan Baker bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Baker's reading was a true performance. When required, he brought life to many of the quotes and stories.


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

    Quite honestly, no. A ponderous biography is not the type of listen that draws you in lkike fiction. Instead I found myself looking forward to my morning drive to hear more and was vaguely saddened as I came to the end.


    Any additional comments?

    The timing of this book was incredible. Right when Jobs was at the front of the news because of his death, this book was available as the definitive biography of JObs.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Drew Durham, NC, United States 04-17-12
    Drew Durham, NC, United States 04-17-12
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    "Interesting book about an complicated man"
    If you could sum up Steve Jobs in three words, what would they be?

    He's hard core


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Steve Jobs?

    Steve Jobs going to India to meet his guru. There are a lot of memorable moments and things Steve Jobs does that I didn't know about.


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

    Steve Jobs


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

    I did not have an extreme reaction, but I was disappointed how (spoiler) the main character was cut down in the prime of his life.


    Any additional comments?

    When I read a bio of someone, what I really want to know is whether they the subject is good person or a bad person. Steve Jobs reminded me a lot of Albert Einstein, and he likely modelled himself after Einstein. Like Einstein, Steve Jobs is complicated and the answer isn't black and white.
    Fun fact:
    Einstein was born the year James Clerk Maxwell died.
    Steve Jobs was born the year Einstein died.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Huntington Beach, CA, United States 04-17-12
    John Huntington Beach, CA, United States 04-17-12 Member Since 2009
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    "Interesting from start to finish"

    I am not a big biography fan but this book caught my eye and was thoroughly enjoyable. Steve Jobs is a very interesting study on human achievement in a high tech environment. It seems to me he probably would qualify for a few psychiatric diagnoses, but in the end is a guy who lived his life guided by intuition and his heart. This is not a book that will teach anyone a way to achieve success. It is a book about a very unique individual who achieved success through an incredible use of his inherent talents. Highly recommend for anyone who grew up watching the Mac revolution.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane Toronto, Ontario, Canada 04-17-12
    Jane Toronto, Ontario, Canada 04-17-12 Member Since 2010
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    "It is still rattling around in my head.."
    If you could sum up Steve Jobs in three words, what would they be?

    Confident
    Charismatic
    Intellident


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Steve Jobs?

    His comeback to Apple. Not only did Apple have to rediscover itself, but I think the absence had taught Jobs a lot.


    What does Dylan Baker bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Actually the reading was very natural and the tone was relatively neutral. Reading it myself there would have been a risk that Jobs would have looked much worse, as he had negative qualities that were as powerful as his gifts and I think I would have had a tendency to focus to much on those.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Carpe Diem


    Any additional comments?

    I really enjoyed this book. I work in a large corporation and it really demonstrated the difference one clear voice can make, whether everyone like or agrees with it or not.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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