Extended Audio Sample

Download Hedy’s Folly: The Life and Breakthrough Inventions of Hedy Lamarr, the Most Beautiful Woman in the World Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Hedy’s Folly: The Life and Breakthrough Inventions of Hedy Lamarr, the Most Beautiful Woman in the World, by Richard Rhodes Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (688 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Richard Rhodes Narrator: Bernadette Dunne Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
Regular Price: $15.00 Download
— or —
FlexPass™ Price: $14.95$5.95$5.95 for new members!
Download learn more )

What do Hedy Lamarr, avant-garde composer George Antheil, and your cell phone have in common? The answer is spread-spectrum radio: a revolutionary inven­tion based on the rapid switching of communications sig­nals among a spread of different frequencies. Without this technology, we would not have the digital comforts that we take for granted today. 

Only a writer of Richard Rhodes’s caliber could do justice to this remarkable story. Unhappily married to a Nazi arms dealer, Lamarr fled to America at the start of World War II; she brought with her not only her theatrical talent but also a gift for technical innovation. An introduction to Antheil at a Hollywood dinner table culminated in a U.S. patent for a jam- proof radio guidance system for torpedoes—the unlikely duo’s gift to the U.S. war effort. 

What other book brings together 1920s Paris, player pianos, Nazi weaponry, and digital wireless into one satisfying whole? In its juxtaposition of Hollywood glamour with the reality of a brutal war, Hedy’s Folly is a riveting book about unlikely amateur inventors collaborating to change the world.

Download and start listening now!

BK_RAND_002835

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Sue | 2/13/2014

    " ok.... interesting story; however, could not understand the science/engineering "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Kathleen | 2/5/2014

    " I was unimpressed by this biography. I was intrigued by reading about the intellectual life of a woman who was known mostly for her looks. The execution was dissapointing. It was ok, but very dry. I would have liked to hear more about Hedy and less about her partner. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 by Jourdan | 1/31/2014

    " Poor Hedy. Marginalized even in her own biography. Author goes off on long tangents, spending entire chapters with out even mentioning Ms. Lamarr. Her Wikipedia entry provides just as much information. Frustrated me so much, I barely got past the halfway mark before giving up. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Scott Smith | 1/27/2014

    " This was an entertaining little book offering vignettes into the interesting lives of Hedy Lamarr and George Antheil in 1920s Vienna and Paris, 1930s NYC and Hollywood, and beyond. It also offered an interesting exposition of their contribution to technology - frequency hopping or spread spectrum transmission - and follow up on how the technology developed and provides the electrical infrastructure of modern day communications, such as cell phone service. It did not offer much in the elaboration of HOW they collaborated on this project. They were an unlikely couple of polymaths. In fact, entire story is unlikely, and is the charm of the book. However, their invention was never used by the Navy, and was filed and forgotten, much like the Ark of the Covenant was stored at the back of the vast warehouse at the end of "Raiders of the Lost Ark". It left one wondering why this book was written. It was anticlimactic. It is as though the author conducted research which showed that there wasn't much of a cohesive story there, albeit interesting characters, and decided that he couldn't let that research go to waste - hence, the book. It is a lightweight book - an entertainment rather than a serious attempt at scholarship. Mere journalism. "

  • > Show All
Write a Review
What is FlexPass?
  • Your first audiobook is just $5.95
  • Over 90% are at or below $12.95
  • "LOVE IT" guarantee
  • No time limits or expirations