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Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman


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A portrait of the Winner of the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1965, we see the wisdom, humour and curiosity of Richard Feynman through a series of conversations with his friend Ralph Leighton.

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Richard Feynman was, until his death in 1988, the most famous physicist in the world. Only an infinitesimal part of the general population could understand his mathematical physics, but his outgoing and sunny personality, his gift for exposition, his habit of playing the bongo drums, and his testimony to the Presidential Commission on the Challenger Space Shuttle disaster turned him into a celebrity.

Richard Feynman died in 1988 after a long illness. Freeman Dyson, of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey, called him 'the most original mind of his generation', while in its obituary The New York Times described him as 'arguably the most brilliant, iconoclastic and influential of the postwar generation of theoretical physicists'.


History will remember Nobel Prize-winning physicist Feynman (1918-1988), for his work in quantum physics and his role in the investigation of the explosion of the Challenger space shuttle. Contemporary readers and listeners, however, will remember him best for his reputation as a free-thinking iconoclast whose personal adventures were hilarious, insightful and inspiring. Todd does a fabulous job of conveying Feynman's infectious enthusiasm and childlike sense of wonder with his energetic portrayal of the scientist. He's adept even in difficult sections, such as when Feynman "speaks Italian" and "Chinese"-inventing completely made-up but accurate sounding languages. Todd does a good job of portraying Feynman's inquisitive manner and conveys the book's message and attitude with aplomb. While he sounds nothing like the late physicist (Feynman- the subject of James Gleick's Genius-had a thick Long Island accent and sounded more like a cross between Yogi Bear and The Honeymooners' Ed Norton), Todd's clean, polite voice is a revelation. Based on the Norton paperback. (Oct.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Raymond Todd gives an extraordinary performance bringing to evanescent life the amusing adventures of this Nobel prize-winning physicist. Feynman was the quintessential inquirer whose investigations led him, at times, to sophisticated equations, at other times to a kind of social mischief that is delightful in its purity and inspiring in its intellectual courage. Based upon an impromptu talk during drum-playing sessions with his friend Ralph Leighton, this surprise best seller is packed with unforgettable anecdotes. Working at Los Alamos, Feynman cracked safes containing the secrets of the bomb. He challenged an abacus salesman to an arithmetical duel. He trained himself to sniff like a bloodhound. He played frigideira in a Brazilian samba band. In Las Vegas, he learned the ways of gamblers and show girls. He gave his first physics lecture in front of Einstein. Refreshingly honest, iconoclastic, thought-provoking, this one-of-a-kind classic is a must for every collection.‘Peter Josyph, New York

There are two types of genius. Ordinary geniuses do great things, but they leave you room to believe that you could do the same if only you worked hard enough. Then there are magicians, and you can have no idea how they do it. Feynman was a magician -- Hans Bethe, theoretical physicist and Nobel laureate
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 * New York Times Book Review *
Quintessential Feynman - funny, brilliant, bawdy...enormously entertaining * New Yorker *
Buzzes with energy, anecdote and life. It almost makes you want to become a physicist * Science Digest *

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