Brian Keller's Reviews > Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman

Genius by James Gleick
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's review
Mar 09, 2012

really liked it

It's refreshing to find a biography of a scientist that actually gets into some of the science. Gleick isn't afraid of losing his reader and discusses Feynman's work in math and physics at a level beyond the grade-school level.

As is so common in a well-written biography, "Genius" paints a portrait of the human within the legend of a great person. I had read Feynman's books, "Surely You're Joking" and "What Do You Care What Other People Think", and had assumed them to be autobiographical. While those were fun and delightful, Gleick helps his readers put those carefully constructed books of anectdotes in a richer context. Oh, and what a rich context it is. I was transported into Feynman's life and was really moved at his tragedies and triumphs.
"Genius" gives a very intimate view of Feynman, a view which Feynman himself seems unlikely to have shared in life. I'm grateful to have "met" Feynman this way.

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message 1: by Gary (new)

Gary Schroeder This was given to me as a gift when it first came out in the 90s. Never got around to it. I'll have to dust it off and have a go. If you like Gleick's "unafraid to delve into the science" style, you've got to check out his most recent book, "The Information." I really enjoyed that one.

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