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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 4 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
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)   
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 500 REVIEWER)   
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 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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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Amazing man, 13 July 2005
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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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars great, inspirational book, 6 Jun 2011
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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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Welcome to the Richard Feynman show!, 14 May 2011
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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5.0 out of 5 stars A great book for students and professionals alike!!!, 7 Jun 1999
By A Customer
Recently, during a course in Quantum Mechanics, my professor suggested reading this book and I feel that my life has a new meaning now. Richard Feynman was a true genius and anyone remotely interested in the field or the man must read this book. Feynman's autobiography brings to light an amazing man who fixes radios since he was ten, who cracks safes, who can smell like a dog, does tricks like a conjurer and even picks rooms directly opposite to the girls' dormitory!!! One of the most brilliant minds of twentieth century, the autobiography also portrays him as a human being who didnt do extraordinary things but ordinary things extraordinarily well. A must read for students or even for ordinary people because the book also shows that human capability is in the will and the mind. We set boundaries and limitations to our abilities ourselves not bothering to think that we are capable of a lot more if we put ourselves to the task. For a more scientific approach to his work, you may wish to read the book, 'QED' which has a series of his lectures at Caltech for the general public and the famed 'Feynman's Lectures on Physics' his lectures in college physics at Caltech during 1965-66.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Feynman does things his own way., 17 April 1999
By A Customer
Mr. Feynman's passion for life in general, and for science in particular, is truly inspirational. It is always difficult for a scientist to explain and express her/his passion for physics or mathematics to someone who has no scientific background. It is rather like a music lover trying to explain the genius of Mozart to the deaf. But that's exactly what Feynman does in this book, by intertwining the scientific and the not-so-scientific aspects of his life. Anyone, scientist or not, is sure to enjoy the humour and adventure in this collection of stories. But underlying these honest and often hysterical anecdotes are some fundamental truths about science and education, which apply to many aspects of our lives. Time and again, Feynman has you nodding your head and doubling over with laughter as he insists on pointing out the obvious, refuses to play along with absurd social norms, and just keeps on doing it his own way. (If you enjoyed this book, you are sure to enjoy Feynman's "What Do YOU Care What Other People Think?")
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5.0 out of 5 stars Learn even more of Feynman - A Life with Integrity, 2 Jan 1998
By A Customer
Feynman challenges the Challenger Commission Inquiry (pun intended) with an in-your-face, simple demonstration of thermal expansion/contraction for the O-Ring seals. Wasn't he the only one of this select group not kowtowing and susceptible to employment retribution [NASA, Ride, et al.]? Imagine if everyone actually said it as it is? Feynman, in a bar, says he'll buy a woman drinks (after first being asked to by her) only if she first agrees to bedding w/him afterwards. Conditions point blank. Cold. No silly games. Too intelligent and life's too short. Feynman had great disdain for affectation: a pope's gown, military bars & stars, long titles. I don't recall the book giving you all of this, but you do get a very refreshing insight into a real person - Dr. Richard P. of Rockaway. And you know that question: Of all the people ...whom would you like to have a dinner with? Sorry, D-Cups.
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Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character
Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman: Adventures of a Curious Character by Richard Phillips Feynman (Audio CD - Oct 2005)
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