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Young Einstein: And the story of E=mc2 (Kindle Single) [Kindle Edition]

Robyn Arianrhod
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Everyone recognises the famous physicist with the wild, white hair. But what sort of person was the young Albert Einstein, before he became universally acclaimed as the archetypal genius? And how did his genius unfold? In this brilliant new Kindle Single, scientist Robyn Arianrhod blends biography with popular science to tell the story of how young Albert developed a theory that – unknown to him at first – contained the seeds of his extraordinary equation E = mc2.

Arianrhod, who wrote her PhD on Einstein’s general theory of relativity, makes the ideas behind the equation accessible to the lay reader, and sets young Einstein’s exploration of these ideas against the backdrop of his first loves, his family and marriage, and, above all, his childlike wonder at the nature of the universe. She introduces his heroes and scientific inspirations, and the friends who believed in him when no one else did. In personalising Einstein, she brings to life both the man and his science, in a short, easy-to-read narrative. In showing how he discovered his famous equation, and what it means, she draws a compelling portrait of this prodigious intellect whose unfathomable grasp of the building blocks of physics would change our world forever.

About the Author:
Dr Robyn Arianrhod is the author of two critically acclaimed works of popular science and scientific history: Einstein’s Heroes: Imagining the World Through the Language of Mathematics, and Seduced by Logic: Émilie du Châtelet, Mary Somerville and the Newtonian Revolution. Both were shortlisted for major book awards and are published in the USA. Einstein’s Heroes was translated into several languages. Robyn was awarded her PhD for research on Einstein’s general theory of relativity and has lectured in applied mathematics (including special relativity) for many years. She is currently an Adjunct Research Fellow in the School of Mathematical Sciences at Monash University in Melbourne, where she is undertaking research on the structure of relativistic space-times. She is also a technical reviewer for the American Mathematical Society.

Praise for Robyn Arianrhod's books:

Einstein’s Heroes
‘Arianrhod’s achievement is to so masterfully combine history, biography, and mathematics as to absorb and enlighten even the mathematically maladroit’ – Booklist

‘An intriguing blend of science, history, and biography . . . Arianrhod’s well-written, fascinating discussion of intertwined topics is highly recommended’ – Library Journal (starred review)

‘A thrilling story . . . Arianrhod brings out the human side of the scientists’ – Bloombergnews

‘Offers readers an engaging intellectual exercise combining physics, language, mathematics, and biography’ – Science News

Seduced by Logic
‘Seduced by Logic offers the lay reader an easy and agreeable introduction to the evolution of some crucial scientific debates . . . One cannot help be captivated by her intellectual honesty and enthusiasm’ – Times Higher Education

‘An elegant and inspiring history of how scientific revolutions make their way’ – Edward Dolnick, The Clockwork Universe

‘Here is a skillfully written tapestry of the science, history and portrayal of two of the most charismatic women of mathematical science. Robyn Arianrhod has produced a captivating masterpiece’ – Joseph Mazur, author of Euclid in the Rainforest and What’s Luck Got to Do with It?




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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars does what it says on the tin 19 Aug. 2014
By Stan
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Einstein's early life and his famous equation. The author gives a good character picture of young Einstein, who comes across as a pleasant but rather obsessed person. He married and it seems that his wife's support was crucial to his early career as expense of her own. Sadly, although he loved his family, Einstein's work was his priority and they broke up.
Some things seem sketched around. For example, he was a Jew and this gets a couple of mentions but was he at all affected by anti-semitism? He changed his nationality, but no reason is given. But it does show how he failed to fit into the educational mould of the day and exasperated his tutors - pity you have to be a genius to get away with it.
The author has done an excellent job in describing the physics of the day. Famous (and less famous) scientists are introduced and their work simply but clearly explained. Einstein's own work is also described in simple lay terms. Notes are copious, difficult to flip to in the Kindle version but invaluable for a serious reader.
My only regret is that the book was not extended, to include Einsteins later work and his life after he remarried. Did he manage to reconcile work and family life second time around? But, within the scope of the title, it provides an excellent source and I learned a lot.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars School Essay 21 Jun. 2014
Some of this reads like a school essay. Nothing wrong with making complicated subjects a bit more understandable to the layman (and I'm certainly a layman in this area) but at 1.99 for 79 pages of wiki-type material I think not.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating insight! 13 July 2014
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Thoroughly enjoyed the book. Not the sort I would normally read but I found it a fascinating insight into Einstein's life. Didn't understand all the physics, but that did not detract from the enjoyment.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read on a difficult subject 24 Jun. 2014
In this book Robyn Arianrhod has illuminated Einstein's famous equation - and provided a compelling guide to his life as a young man. A great achievement, I recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
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THis is an excellent short account of the background to Einstein's major works.. I thought I knew much of this but was pleased to find much of which I was ignorant. It also explains well the background in Physics from which his ideas developed - and this is important for young people growing uo these days with limited understanding of just how limited was our understanding at that time.. I do not know the subject well enough to vouvh for its accuracy but it seems to me very likely to be correct.
I strongly recommend it for anyone interested in the development of modern physics.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars 5 July 2014
By DrB
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Quite a short book with little explanation of the physics
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Three stars, to be honest, if I could give two and a half I probably would. Maybe I misunderstood the description, but I was expecting more of a story about the early life of the great man, and not so much technical information. Had I wanted to learn about his work in detail there are better reads I'm sure. For someone who isn't really scientifically minded and doesn't actually understand the theory of relativity it is a bit of a slog. I have to say I was a little bit disappointed, still, some you win some you lose.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing end! 24 July 2014
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I knew from reviews that this a short book. However, I was still reading merrily away at 66% when it came to an abrupt ending. It seems the last third consists of author's notes and bibliographies.
Now the "book" itself. Reasonably interesting; the technical details were just about as much as I could manage and the details of Einstein's early life were quite new to me. Pity it stopped without covering his later life after the 1930's
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