Mara's Reviews > Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!: Adventures of a Curious Character

Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman! by Richard Feynman
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Oct 19, 2007

really liked it
bookshelves: nonfiction
Recommended for: curious characters, nerds, and anyone who likes an adventure

When it comes to Feynman's humility, I think this is a case of "The lady doth protest too much". He is constantly asserting that prizes, awards, accolades, and the regard of others mean nothing to him, but then you have to wonder what the point of this book was? (Post-mortem interviews with his friends also seemed to indicate the humility was feigned, and pretty poorly so) Still, that and Feynman's vehement atheism are my only marks against this book which ought to inspire people everywhere, insular nerds especially, to go off and have adventures. That Feynman was also present at one of the most significant moments in human history--the creation and testing of the nuclear bomb in Los Alamos--brings a real humanism to the subject. Here were scientists just trying to solve an interesting and perplexing problem. Well, they solved it and then they watched their solution open a wound in the earth. Most of the stories, though, are less emotionally exacting and likely to make you laugh out loud. I've read sections of this book out to friends and family and it always gets someone interested in reading the rest of the book themselves.
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