Leonardo da Vinci Audiobook, by Walter Isaacson Play Audiobook Sample

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Author: Walter Isaacson Narrator: Alfred Molina Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio UK Audio Length: Release Date: October 2017 Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download ISBN: 9781471168420

Publisher Description

He was history’s most creative genius. What secrets can he teach us?

The author of the acclaimed bestsellers Steve Jobs, Einstein, and Benjamin Franklin brings Leonardo da Vinci to life in this exciting new biography.

Based on thousands of pages from Leonardo’s astonishing notebooks and new discoveries about his life and work, Walter Isaacson weaves a narrative that connects his art to his science. He shows how Leonardo’s genius was based on skills we can improve in ourselves, such as passionate curiosity, careful observation, and an imagination so playful that it flirted with fantasy.

He produced the two most famous paintings in history, The Last Supper and the Mona Lisa. But in his own mind, he was just as much a man of science and technology. With a passion that sometimes became obsessive, he pursued innovative studies of anatomy, fossils, birds, the heart, flying machines, botany, geology, and weaponry. His ability to stand at the crossroads of the humanities and the sciences, made iconic by his drawing of Vitruvian Man, made him history’s most creative genius.

His creativity, like that of other great innovators, came from having wide-ranging passions. He peeled flesh off the faces of cadavers, drew the muscles that move the lips, and then painted history’s most memorable smile. He explored the math of optics, showed how light rays strike the cornea, and produced illusions of changing perspectives in The Last Supper. Isaacson also describes how Leonardo’s lifelong enthusiasm for staging theatrical productions informed his paintings and inventions.

Leonardo’s delight at combining diverse passions remains the ultimate recipe for creativity. So, too, does his ease at being a bit of a misfit: illegitimate, gay, vegetarian, left-handed, easily distracted, and at times heretical. His life should remind us of the importance of instilling, both in ourselves and our children, not just received knowledge but a willingness to question it—to be imaginative and, like talented misfits and rebels in any era, to think different.

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Quotes

  • “Alfred Molina’s narration is easy to follow…The author’s sometimes detailed passages seem natural, and Molina’s cultured accent adds to the listening pleasure without seeming like an affectation. His fluency with Italian names helps keep the reading flowing. The PDF is a visual treat and is referenced throughout the work, so listeners will want to refer to it regularly to get the full benefit of the author’s analysis. Nonetheless, the reading stands on its own. Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award.”

    - AudioFile
  • “Isaacson’s acclaimed biography of the artist and inventor is narrated by actor Molina, whom you might recognize from Boogie Nights or—wait, is this some kind of conspiracy?—The Da Vinci Code.”

    - Los Angeles Times (audio review)
  • “A tour through the life and works of one of the most extraordinary human beings of all time and in the company of the most engaging, informed, and insightful guide imaginable. Walter Isaacson is at once a true scholar and a spellbinding writer.”

    - David McCullough, Pulitzer Prize-winning author
  • “A powerful story of an exhilarating mind and life….the book is a study in creativity: how to define it, how to achieve it.”

    - New Yorker
  • “[Leonardo] comes to life in all his remarkable brilliance and oddity.”

    - Washington Post
  • “A masterpiece.”

    - San Franciso Chronicle

Awards

  • Winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award
  • Longlisted for the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction
  • A #1 New York Times bestseller
  • An Audible.com bestseller
  • A Los Angeles Times Pick of Best Audiobooks
  • A BookPage Top Pick of the Month
  • A New York Times audio bestseller
  • Winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award

Customer Reviews

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  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5

    " Isaacson captures both the historic and human perspective of this legend. I enjoyed it immensely. "

    - Joie, 4/14/2018

About the Author

Walter Isaacson is the author of highly acclaimed works of nonfiction, including four biographies that have made the #1 spot on the New York Times bestsellers list. A professor of history at Tulane University, he has been CEO of the Aspen Institute, chair of CNN, and editor of Time. Visit him at Isaacson.Tulane.edu.

About the Narrator

Alfred Molina is an actor and winner of numerous Earphones Awards for audiobook narration. His films include Spiderman II, Frida, Magnolia, Chocolat, Boogie Nights, The Perez Family, Maverick, Enchanted April, Not Without My Daughter, Raiders of the Lost Ark and Prick Up Your Ears. He has appeared extensively on British and American television, including the TV series Bram & Alice and Ladies’ Man. He received a Tony Award nomination, a Drama Desk Award, and an Outer Critics Circle Award for his performance in Art on Broadway. He also performed on Broadway in Molly Sweeney and in Speed the Plow for the National Theatre in London.