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Extended Audio Sample Perfectly Reasonable Deviations from the Beaten Track: The Letters of Richard P. Feynman Audiobook, by Richard P. Feynman Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (819 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Richard P. Feynman, Michelle Feynman Narrator: Richard Poe, Johanna Parker Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: May 2017 ISBN: 9781449802011
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A Nobel Prize-winning physicist, a loving husband and father, an enthusiastic teacher, a surprisingly accomplished bongo player, and a genius of the highest caliber—Richard P. Feynman was all these and more.

Perfectly Reasonable Deviations From the Beaten Track—collecting over forty years’ worth of Feynman’s letters—offers an unprecedented look at the writer and thinker whose scientific mind and lust for life made him a legend in his own time. Containing missives to and from such scientific luminaries as Victor Weisskopf, Stephen Wolfram, James Watson, and Edward Teller, as well as a remarkable selection of letters to and from fans, students, family, and people from around the world eager for Feynman’s advice and counsel, Perfectly Reasonable Deviations From the Beaten Track not only illuminates the personal relationships that underwrote the key developments in modern science, but also forms the most intimate look at Feynman yet available. Feynman was a man many felt close to but few really knew, and this collection reveals the full wisdom and private passion of a personality that captivated everyone it touched. Perfectly Reasonable Deviations From the Beaten Track is an eloquent testimony to the virtue of approaching the world with an inquiring eye; it demonstrates the full extent of the Feynman legacy like never before. Edited and with additional commentary by his daughter Michelle, it’s a must-read for Feynman fans everywhere, and for anyone seeking to better understand one of the towering figures-and defining personalities-of the twentieth century

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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michael | 2/17/2014

    " New layers of the Feynman persona are revealed here! A very vivid philosophy comes into a more personal perspective, an intimate and touching read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Maggie | 2/4/2014

    " This book is composed of correspondence to and from Richard Feynman, a Nobel Prize winning physicist. When he was very young he worked on the Manhattan Project and at the end of his career on the causes of the Challenger Space Shuttle accident, but in between he engaged his mind and curiousity and taught hundreds of students in a very engaging way. During his lifetime he was an excellent correspondent and, clearly, people saved his letters, so that today we are privileged to see the man he was -- intensely curious, generous, fun loving, encouraging to others, loving to his family, and never afraid to appear the fool or to fail. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cassandra Silva | 2/2/2014

    " I am addicted to Feynman. Everything about him, everything he writes, anything about his life its a total addiction! Can't get enough. Surely your Joking Mr. Feynman was still the best though. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ben | 1/21/2014

    " Very good read. I always like a new oppurunity to learn more about this curious character. However, something about this book felt wrong. Some of those letters should never have been made public. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Raghavendra Datta Palleti | 1/21/2014

    " As usual Richard Feynman's quirky, completely down-to-brass tacks thinking amazes and intrigues me. Never a dull moment when you're reading Feynman, be it an epic series of lectures on Physics or anything related to his life, which in itself is a huge experiment. Inspired. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Edelhart Kempeneers | 1/19/2014

    " Viel tegen in vergelijking met zijn "Surely...". "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jasperzelf | 1/19/2014

    " One of my favourite books. So sweet and smart and funny and wise. The finest Feynman book I know. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Drew Vonada-Smith | 1/4/2014

    " Very interesting way to see into the world of Feynman. A far more polite character than I would have imagined! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Don | 1/2/2014

    " Actually listened to the book, but the hardcover has a picture of the book, the audio book does not. Quite enjoyable. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sarah Kelleher | 12/22/2013

    " What a cool dude. I happened upon this book on my dad's shelf and it gave me giggles and chuckles, And it made me cry big dripping tears that landed in fat globs on the page. Feynman was awesome. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Peter Kahn | 12/8/2013

    " After reading through Feynman's letter I feel like I have a better sense of him and it makes his other writings more meaningful (sort of a "rosencrantz and guildenstern are dead" for his other works). It's a great read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jean-Luc | 12/4/2013

    " Wonderful book. It's impossible for anything Feynman-related to be bad. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 BilieS | 11/27/2013

    " great character, smart, humble. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mona | 11/10/2013

    " An interesting insight into the personal life as well as communication skills of Richard Feynman in the age when written letters were prevalent. Repetitive at a few places but a fun read overall "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ken | 9/13/2013

    " While many of Feynman's books are "for show," I feel like these letters allow one to get a better insight into Feynman's true personality and philosophy. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 James | 3/14/2013

    " Collection of letters to and from Richard Feynman. I liked his enthusiasm for physics and the advice and encouragement he gives to young students. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Max Salick | 2/23/2013

    " A good book - you're ultimately reading the emails (well... so-called "letters" back then) of a genius. It does get a bit long, however, as it includes several unnecessary logistical letters. The ones where he goes on about science, theories, and philosophies are incredible, though. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tori | 12/23/2012

    " An amazing story of one man's life through everything from love until death. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Steven Felicelli | 9/22/2012

    " brilliant scientist under the mistaken impression he had a personality "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ed | 8/3/2012

    " This has a whole lot of Richard's letter, some very personal to his dying wife who had TB and some very funny. I like Feynman. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Miles | 6/19/2012

    " Interesting collection of letters from one of physics' greatest. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Margaret | 5/22/2012

    " So far this making my commute to work zip by (I'm listening to an audiotape). "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Reenie | 3/23/2012

    " Some really nice moments in amongst this collection of letters to and from Feynman, particularly the ones where he talks about how you should go about doing science. The answer, apparently, is to do whatever the hell you want, and only what you want. Sweet! I'm in. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joel | 4/21/2011

    " Hilarious and filled with anecdotes on his illustrious life. Particularly hilarious dismantling of the national academy of sciences and it's relative merits. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jasperzelf | 1/28/2011

    " One of my favourite books. So sweet and smart and funny and wise. The finest Feynman book I know. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Julie | 12/20/2010

    " An entertaining book that was not only very informative and intriguing, but moving as well. I look forward to reading his other publications. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Peter | 12/14/2010

    " After reading through Feynman's letter I feel like I have a better sense of him and it makes his other writings more meaningful (sort of a "rosencrantz and guildenstern are dead" for his other works). It's a great read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kirsty | 12/10/2010

    " Collection of letters to/from Feynman, edited by his daughter. Some bits interesting, other bits pretty tedious; expect every reader will find different bits interesting though. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Drew | 11/18/2010

    " Very interesting way to see into the world of Feynman. A far more polite character than I would have imagined! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 James | 6/18/2010

    " Collection of letters to and from Richard Feynman. I liked his enthusiasm for physics and the advice and encouragement he gives to young students. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ed | 1/9/2010

    " This has a whole lot of Richard's letter, some very personal to his dying wife who had TB and some very funny. I like Feynman. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Brad | 11/28/2009

    " A great, yet sometimes sad, book of Feynman's letters. His first wife had tuberculosis and eventually died, and there are many letters from this period. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Margaret | 8/22/2009

    " So far this making my commute to work zip by (I'm listening to an audiotape). "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michael | 2/25/2009

    " New layers of the Feynman persona are revealed here! A very vivid philosophy comes into a more personal perspective, an intimate and touching read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Blades | 2/24/2009

    " A different format, but no less Feynman. A good read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Don | 11/17/2008

    " Actually listened to the book, but the hardcover has a picture of the book, the audio book does not. Quite enjoyable. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jean-Luc | 11/16/2008

    " Wonderful book. It's impossible for anything Feynman-related to be bad. "

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About the Author
Author Richard P. Feynman

Richard P. Feynman (1918–1988) earned a BS from MIT and a PhD from Princeton. From 1942 to 1945, he assisted with the development of the atomic bomb. He then taught at Cornell and Caltech, where he contributed to the theories of superfluidity and quarks. He shared the 1965 Nobel Prize in Physics for work on the theory of quantum electrodynamics.

About the Narrators

Richard Poe has worked extensively in movies, television, and on Broadway. He is best known for his portrayal of Gul Evek in three different Star Trek series: Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and Star Trek: Voyager. He is a well-known and prolific audiobook narration who has won twelve AudioFile Earphones Awards.

Johanna Parker is an Audie and Earphone Award–winning actress living and working in San Francisco. Since narrating her first audiobook in 2002, she has received praise for her work in all genres, including her portrayal of Sookie Stackhouse in Charlaine Harris’ Southern Vampire books. She received her BFA in acting from Boston University and studied Shakespeare at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. She has performed on stages in London, Los Angeles, Seattle, and New York and has numerous film and television credits. As a voice-over actress, she has voiced commercials, video games, documentaries, and websites.