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on 27 August 2002
This is a well written biography of Tesla which gives a factual account of his unbelievable career. It shows that he was an engineer; his inventions worked because he did the theory to ensure they did. He was way ahead of his contemporaries, including Marconi and Edison, and this books should be in every degree course.
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on 22 July 2002
If you like biographies about great persons, this book has its natural place side by side with "Genius" (James Gleich about Richard Feynman).
And when you have read it, you'll become amazed why Tesla isn't as famous as Einstein (or Feynman).
Unlike many books about Tesla, this is about facts - and what facts! There are no place to myths about Tesla, the facts are enough - and this is the book where you'll find them.
A reliable and well written book about a true wizard of science - a wizard that made life easier to billions - and "how" and "why" he did it.
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on 8 November 2011
Having just barely finished the book, I was impressed by how much attention was given to both the earlier and latter parts of his life. Much of the details available (for free) online tend to gloss over the life of the young Tesla and only rarely go in to detail about his last years, and those are usually to attempt to denigrate the great man.

As others have mentioned there is some glorification at the expense of others, but this seems to be representative of Tesla's sometimes vainglorious, often pompous self-opinion as evidenced by the many letters between himself and his friends, not to mention those that opposed and/or profited from his many patents. Towards the end of the book you can almost feel the authors frustration at how Tesla often got in the way of selling his own work by force of his personality, which seemingly helped create his status as a (even if much lauded) pariah.

Tesla's personal correspondence is extensively documented in this book, sometimes ad nauseum, but it gives a great insight in to the mind of the man himself, instead of relying on secondary or tertiary sources.

My only real disappointment, is the lack of technicality. For a biography based around someone who's inventions have in many ways powered the modern world, the workings of those machines are barely touched or at best the details are fleeting and textbook. I should imagine many readers who bought this book, didn't do so because they are followers of the cult of personality so prevalent in many modern biographies, but because of an interest in all that Tesla both created and theorised.

All in all a good book, and a very comprehensive history of the man and his mind, if not the minutiae of his machines and ideas.
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on 13 May 2002
A factual, academic Tesla biography, without any of the usual sensationalism of his being sent from other planets!
Extremely well written, the book reads like a novel and also acts as an excellent reference work.
The Margaret Cheney and Robert Lomas books make a good introduction to a man who was a rather complex subject, but this book really does add so many layers to his character that to any serious student of Tesla or his work this should be an essential part of their library.
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on 23 October 1998
To this day our children never hear of Tesla through text books, their library, or even the news media. Ever seen or heard of a TV special on the most brilliant genius in the last thousand years, NO. Read how the government has kept much of Tesla's science and knowledge for top secret black programs. Just as Steiger, in Alien Rapture, has detailed the TR-3B flying triangle that warps gravity as Tesla suggested could be done. I've read every Tesla book and even have copies of his Colorado Springs experiments and patents. Before this book, Childress had written my favorite book on the life and science of Tesla. This book is extraordinary, It is well worth reading for anyone. I could not recommend this book more.
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Nikola Tesla was a genius, so why didn't I know anything about him until recently?

This book answers that question.

His life was full of poor business decisions, unscrupulous business partners, competitors who blatantly stole his inventions, and never ending patent litigation, yet he never gave up hope that his inventions would change the world.

I have to admit that I found this book hard in places. It is quite a daunting book too, printed in a fairly small font and spanning around 500 pages. I also had a few problems with the author's style.

Written supposedly in a straight chronological sequence, the author would would sometimes jump around from topic to topic and year to year seemingly at random.

It is definitely worth persevering though as the sheer amount of information it contains about this incredible man is just astounding!

Tesla's hope that one day he would change the world for the better may still yet come true.
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on 9 March 2009
I have long been an admirer of the many inventions of Nicola Tesla, and I have always bemoaned the fact that there was no definitive biography of the man behind the inventions. Well now there is! Wizard is a thoroughly well written and researched work, and an easy read for the technical and non-technical alike. Marc J Seifer has obviously drawn on every source of available information to produce this brilliant book. You simply will not believe how much of the modern world was invented by Tesla BEFORE 1900! It also gives great insight into the reasons that Tesla is not recognised for what he really achieved, and why his financial backers pulled out whenever the majority of the profits were not going to come their way. Read it and BE AMAZED!
Phil Whitley
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on 4 February 1999
I read the 1998 softcover edition and LOVED IT! I first saw the name "TESLA" as a "brand" name on the television sets in eastern Europe. My curiosity up, I searched and found this book. I became a TESLA fan immediately! TESLA had the greatest inventive genius of the 20th century, and most of his key patents were filed in the 1890's !! HE WAS SO FAR AHEAD OF HIS TIME that some of his work is still labeled "TOP SECRET" by the U.S. government today. This book is a lesson in history, conspiracy, industrial espionage, science, corporate power and the sheer awesome genius of TESLA, whose name SHOULD be taught to every school child....before that of EDISON !!!
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on 9 November 2016
Excellent book, spot on, and really involved,which is needed.liked the touch about the pigeon,says loads about the guy,. Still. Think he will be well turning in his grave right now,and probably rightly so....not probably , definitely!
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on 21 December 1998
This book is without a shadow of doubt the BEST book on Tesla ever written. If you're looking for non-technical Tesla information, this is the book to buy!
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