Amy Wachsmuth, February 7, 2013 (view all comments by Amy Wachsmuth)
A fascinating foray into the fun yet formidable physics of Mr. Feynman. Actually, this book is less about physics and more about the life of Nobel Prize Laureate, Richard Feynman. (Richard just rolled over in his grave; if you want to know why -- read this book!) Once I adjusted my expectations from education to entertainment, I absorbed every word. He was always interesting, at times very entertaining and despite his obvious genius he had an utter lack of pretentiousness and conceit that I previously assumed afflicted all venerated scientists. I left this book wishing for more, and feeling inspired to pursue my own adventures in curiosity. What could I achieve if, like Richard, I abandoned my Western culture imperative of accomplishment through suffering and played with my talents in ways I felt was fun?
Pat K, September 28, 2011 (view all comments by Pat K)
Feynman's a spectacular character, both brilliant and goofy. This memoir, essentially an extended riff on his multifaceted curiosity, is delightful in the extreme - eschewing technical jargon in favor of fantastic anecdotes and imparting a deep passion for uncompromising, rigorous thought. Even (especially!) if you're not particularly invested in science, Feynman's innately roving fascination with art, drumming, the art of picking locks, and the failures of contemporary education is deeply engaging and rewarding.
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wurdnurd, February 18, 2010 (view all comments by wurdnurd)
Richard Feynman is exactly the kind of a-hole I always manage to fall in love with: intense, impossibly intelligent, and arrogant as all get-out. And reading this book, it’s easy to see why; Feynman is a personable, hilarious writer, willing and able to laugh and everything and everyone without reservation (himself included). A rare glimpse at genius from the inside out, and the accidental adventures it always seems to illicit, this book is like listening to the eccentric dude at the end of the bar who loves to tell and retell every detail of his billion and one adventures.
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Elaine, July 27, 2009 (view all comments by Elaine)
Feynman was a Nobel Prize-winning physicist with an amazing breadth of scientific achievements. This is an autobiography which is a set of quirky anecdotes of his life. It ranges from his experiences playing with a samba school during Mardi Gras in Brazil while he was living there for part of a year, his attempts to meet women, to his times discussing physics with Niels Bohr at Los Alamos while working on the atom bomb. The book consists of a large series of vignettes, mostly disconnected so you can just pick it up and read a story or two. You don't need to know any science to enjoy it, although being a scientist might help you recognize some of his behavior...
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W. W. Norton & Company -
by Los Angeles Times Book Review,
"Anyone who can read it without laughing out loud is crazy."
by Peter Josyph, Library Journal,
"Raymond Todd gives an extraordinary performance bringing to evanescent life the amusing adventures of this Nobel prize-winning physicist....Refreshingly honest, iconoclastic, thought-provoking, this one-of-a-kind classic is a must for every collection."
by New York Times Book Review,
"Proves once again that it is possible to laugh out loud and scratch your head at the same time."
by The New Yorker,
"Quintessential Feynman — funny, brilliant, bawdy...enormously entertaining."
by Science Digest,
"Buzzing with energy, anecdote and life. It almost makes you want to become a physicist."
by New York Times Book Review,
"A storyteller in the tradition of Mark Twain. He proves once again that it is possible to laugh out loud and scratch your head at the same time."
Richard Feynman was a great scientist, a winner of the Nobel Prize, remembered equally for his laboratory work on liquid helium and his wonderful, unquenchable vitality and sense of humor. His lighthearted approach to life made his lectures a delight and his scientific accomplishments all the more intriguing. Feynman was interested in everything. He painted, traded ideas with Einstein and Bohr, calculated odds with Nick the Greek, accompanied ballet on the bongos. Here is Feynman's astonishing life story — a combustible mixture of high intelligence, unlimited curiosity, eternal skepticism, and raging chutzpah.
A New York Times bestseller—the outrageous exploits of one of this century's greatest scientific minds and a legendary American original.
In this phenomenal national bestseller, the Nobel Prize-winning physicist Richard P. Feynman recounts in his inimitable voice his adventures trading ideas on atomic physics with Einstein and Bohr and ideas on gambling with Nick the Greek, painting a naked female toreador, accompanying a ballet on his bongo drums and much else of an eyebrow-raising and hilarious nature.
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