By Walter Isaacson,

Book cover of Einstein: His Life and Universe

Book description

By the author of the acclaimed bestseller 'Benjamin Franklin', this is the first full biography of Albert Einstein since all of his papers have become available. How did his mind work? What made him a genius? Isaacson's biography shows how his scientific imagination sprang from the rebellious nature of his…

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Why read it?

3 authors picked Einstein as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Some of life’s greatest adventures, triumphs, and disasters are intellectual (which is why I compare Albert Einstein to Hannibal in my own book). As a young iconoclast, Einstein completely blew up the conventional wisdom in science. He found a new way of thinking about gravity, time, space, light, and the whole universe. Being eccentric, he came to embody our notions about the mad scientist. As a human being, he could be endearing but also cruelit’s not clear whether he ever met, or cared about, his disabled daughter Lieserl. But the most intriguing lesson of his life to me…

This is without question the essential book on Einstein. Isaacson has such a dynamic voice that even though it is non-fiction, it reads like a novel. This is a remarkable accomplishment since the book does not sacrifice detail for narrative pace. Isaacson is brilliant at re-creating the joy of scientific discovery, for with his liberal use of Einstein's correspondence, you feel as if you are with Einstein sharing his excitement. Isaacson is also a master at explaining the science—he simplifies the mathematics, without losing the implications and importance of Einstein's theories.

From Michael's list on Albert Einstein for the non-scientist.

Walter Isaacson may well be America’s pre-eminent biographer. Einstein: His Life and Universe is a powerful book that leaves no stone unturned in providing an understanding of the motivation and methods of this extraordinary scientist. It also provides the foundation for my book

There is both depth and feeling in Walter Isaacson’s biography. The reader comes away with an understanding and appreciation of how a patent clerk, whom no physicists wanted to work with, managed to find, through his vision and persistence, answers to the most challenging and complex scientific problems of his day. It is a great story.

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