David Boyce's Reviews > A Beautiful Mind: The Life of Mathematical Genius and Nobel Laureate John Nash

A Beautiful Mind by Sylvia Nasar
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Aug 06, 11

Well Well, if you want to see a nice film about a nice man conquering a nice mental illness then watch the film. If you want to find out about an awful guy getting an awful disease and ruining the lives of everybody that got close to him, then read the book. Sylvia Nasar paints a painful picture of loss. She describes the mystery world of schizophrenia as seen through the eyes of those people most hurt by it, the family and friends of John Nash. As a reader I couldn’t help but sympathise with Alicia and Eleanor and his children. He won the Nobel prize, but other than that John Nash was a complete failure as a human being. His remarkable recovery from schizophrenia and his ability to solve mathematical problems never quite make up for the awful neglect and selfishness of this man. Sylvia Nasar doesn’t hero worship though, she paints it as she sees it.
The book is written fairly monotonously and is not that easy to read, though I did finish it in two sittings. Sometimes it seems that Sylvia struggles to make sense of her own notes and throws in disjointed quotes and snippets from other sources in a less than homogeneous way. In places this ruins the flow of the story.
Ultimately the book is worth reading simply because of its honesty.
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message 1: by Reita (new)

Reita Jackson Totally agree with your review.

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