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75 of 77 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
Richard Feynman was a great physicist, a truly original thinker and for many years a hero of mine.
This book is basically a collection of anecdotes about his life and his worldview. No scientific background is required to enjoy this book - it is fantastic - unremittingly entertaining and informative - accessible to all.
The stories cover, amongst other things:...
Published on 18 Jan 2005 by John E. Davidson

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character
I bought this after hearing about this incredible man on a radio 4 programme. Often found myself at the ending of an anecdote thinking "Who would ever sign this up for printing?" Some interesting yarns but so so many that I struggle to think any kinder than "Huh....So what?"
Published 2 months ago by Mr. S. Mcmurray


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75 of 77 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, 18 Jan 2005
This review is from: Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character as Told to Ralph Leighton (Paperback)
Richard Feynman was a great physicist, a truly original thinker and for many years a hero of mine.
This book is basically a collection of anecdotes about his life and his worldview. No scientific background is required to enjoy this book - it is fantastic - unremittingly entertaining and informative - accessible to all.
The stories cover, amongst other things: his childhood, his time at Los Alamos working on the atomic bomb (including his safe breaking escapades), failing his medical with the US Army for psychiatric reasons (you will never put your hands out in the same way again), learning Portuguese (and his reasons for selecting Portuguese over Spanish), learning to paint, learning the bongo drums and his general intolerance of stupidity.
Overall it is a fantastic and easy read - it is almost impossible not to enjoy this book
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Surely an awesome read, 23 April 2006
By 
D. Bower "dannybgoode" (Sheffield) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character as Told to Ralph Leighton (Paperback)
I love this book. I have read it many times and have also given it as a gift to a number of people all who have enjoyed it. To think that it is written by one of the greatest physicists of all time makes it all the more surprising. If there is one person who I would like to go back in time to meet it would be Mr Feynman.

The guy was a genius but also completely down to earth. If you read this book and go away with the impression that he was immodest and big headed like other reviewers felt I would be surprised. This is a man who felt embarressed by winning the Nobel prize, a guy who hated giving lectures at prestigous societies but would never give up a chance to lecture at a high school physics class, who went to Rio to join a Salsa band and march in the carnival, who spent much of his time as Las Alamos annoying the censors and learing how to crack safes. - A curious charater indeed.

All in all if you are interested either a) in physics, b) in interesting people or both read this book. If you want a more in depth but less personal view of Mr Feynman then read James Gleik's Genius.
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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How can a book this rewarding be so easy to read...?, 2 Mar 2003
By 
Andrew Kerr "Alabony" (Dunfermline, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character as Told to Ralph Leighton (Paperback)
I'm delighted to see how many other reviews there are for this fantastic book. For so long, I thought I was one of the few who'd discovered this book, but it seems not. And that's a Good Thing, because I think EVERYONE should read this book.
Yes, Richard Feynman possessed an incredible mind. Yes, he was a brilliant theoretical physicist. But more important than any of that was his lust for life, and thirst for knowledge. And it didn't matter to him what he learned - whether it was safecracking, playing bongo drums, mixing paints, or how to sleep with women!
This book is just Feynman's recollections, as dictated to the author. As a consequence, it's ridiculously easy to read - no highbrow theory or dull prose here.
If you have an ounce of curiosity in your body, buy this book. You will learn a great deal about science, and be fascinated by Feynman's stories. You'll also learn quite a lot about Feynman (and he was a thoroughly entertaining guy!), and most of all, you'll be infected with Feynman's own lust for life and thirst for knowledge.
When you finish it, you'll be sad that you never met this amazing man when he was alive. But console yourself in the knowledge that there's a lot more of Richard Feynman for you to discover in his other books.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read this book, then buy one for all of your friends., 29 Nov 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character as Told to Ralph Leighton (Paperback)
This book is truly rare. You WILL be educated, entertained, baffled, moved, and hopefully inspired to change your whole approach to life. You can not read this book without realising that Feynman was a true original. If you don't enjoy this book, send it to me and I'll eat it without ketchup.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars great, inspirational book, 6 Jun 2011
This review is from: Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character as Told to Ralph Leighton (Paperback)
If you are looking for literature and fine writing, forget it. But if you are looking to spend time with an amusing and inspirational man, you can't be wrong. You will get to know more about one of the most brilliant scientists of his time, who was a strong advocate of intellectual honesty. Every science teacher and education policy maker should read this book!!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Amazing man, 13 July 2005
This review is from: Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character as Told to Ralph Leighton (Paperback)
My Mum found this book for me, she's a physics teacher + I'm an undergraduate physics student with a love of books!
I loved it! Who cares if Feynman was egotistic, or a womaniser or, or... well it doesn't matter!
What matters is how he puts across his love of physics and draws you in!
Its an inspiring book, about an amazing and inspiring man!
the title of the first chapter sums it all up. "He fixes radios by thinking."
Its well worth reading, whoever you are!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Welcome to the Richard Feynman show!, 14 May 2011
This review is from: Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character as Told to Ralph Leighton (Paperback)
A book full of fascinating anecdotes, hilarious life stories and insightful scientific scenarios in the every day life of a truly special character.
After having read rather dry and "slow" biographies of other great man such as Benjamin Franklin, John D. Rockefeller, Theodor Roosevelt this book came as a much appreciated refreshment. It's quick, witty and very entertaining!
If you enjoy watching smart men at work and want to find out more about how they think this is the book for you!
You'll discover they're not that different to you and me, just a bit more thoughtful.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character, 15 May 2014
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This review is from: Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character as Told to Ralph Leighton (Paperback)
I bought this after hearing about this incredible man on a radio 4 programme. Often found myself at the ending of an anecdote thinking "Who would ever sign this up for printing?" Some interesting yarns but so so many that I struggle to think any kinder than "Huh....So what?"
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars life lessons from the master, 9 July 2001
By 
Paul Carson (Chesham, Buckinghamshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character as Told to Ralph Leighton (Paperback)
This book was a revelation to me. My mind went through a mixture of questions. Is this a scientist? Did all this really happen? Just WHO is this guy?
Ever since then, I've tried to find out. Feynman is a cult figure to many. He was inspirational beyond belief. His outlook on life is one any good scientist should follow...but he was more than a dry as dust scientist. He was a real human being. His stories are funny, but they are supposed to teach you too.
Think for yourself, trust your instincts, make sure you know what you're doing, laugh.
I've read this book countless times. It is excellent to dip into at any point. His other works are just as intelligent. Read all of them.
My proudest moment as a maths student has been that I am able to do a project on him next year...it will be wonderful!
For the scientists; not much science for you here. But, you will get a few lessons from the master as to how you might approach your learning/teaching! Feynman strongly believes that rote memorization is useless and he feels angry at sentences such as 'energy makes it move' in kids' textbooks. And he's right...there's also some interesting history of qm's main characters, which makes them more real.
a must read for anyone though, scientist or not.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read, 17 Aug 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Surely You're Joking Mr Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character as Told to Ralph Leighton (Paperback)
I would recommend this book to any reader. The content is amusing (sometimes very funny), but also incorporates some of Feynman's insights into life. Each story is dripping with Feynman's infectious enthusiasm for his many and varied undertakings (professional and otherwise). I loved the conversational style of story telling.
Previous reviewers have mentioned that some of Feynman's claims throughout the text are a little immodest and this is true. However, I think allowances can be made considering what the book has to offer the reader. Read it today!
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