Customer Reviews for

A Beautiful Mind: The Life of Mathematical Genius and Nobel Laureate John Nash

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

A Beautiful Book!

As a person interested in biography, history and psychology, I found this book to be well-written and frequently poignant. Some biographies degrade into a stiff, lifeless recitation of history, but this story is at turns interesting, insightful and compelling. It's been...
As a person interested in biography, history and psychology, I found this book to be well-written and frequently poignant. Some biographies degrade into a stiff, lifeless recitation of history, but this story is at turns interesting, insightful and compelling. It's been a long time since I have enjoyed a biography this much.

posted by Anonymous on September 16, 2001

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

MOVIE DOES NOT TELL TRUE STORY

AFTER SEEING THE MOVIE 'A BEAUTIFUL MIND' TWO TIMES, I WAS ANXIOUS TO READ THE BOOK. THE BOOK TELLS THE TRUE STORY OF JOHN NASH JR. WHO IN ACTUALITY I FOUND VERY DIFFICULT TO LIKE. HE IS A CRUEL PERSON IN MANY WAYS, WHICH THE MOVIE DOES NOT PORTRAY. THE INCESSANT MAT...
AFTER SEEING THE MOVIE 'A BEAUTIFUL MIND' TWO TIMES, I WAS ANXIOUS TO READ THE BOOK. THE BOOK TELLS THE TRUE STORY OF JOHN NASH JR. WHO IN ACTUALITY I FOUND VERY DIFFICULT TO LIKE. HE IS A CRUEL PERSON IN MANY WAYS, WHICH THE MOVIE DOES NOT PORTRAY. THE INCESSANT MATHEMATICAL DISCUSSIONS, I FOUND DIFFICULT TO UNDERSTAND. IT IS ALSO HARD FOR ME TO FATHOM, THAT JOHN WAS NOT DIAGNOSED AS MENTALLY ILL UNTIL AGE 30.

posted by Anonymous on February 11, 2002

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 16, 2001

    A Beautiful Book!

    As a person interested in biography, history and psychology, I found this book to be well-written and frequently poignant. Some biographies degrade into a stiff, lifeless recitation of history, but this story is at turns interesting, insightful and compelling. It's been a long time since I have enjoyed a biography this much.

    9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2002

    Fantastic Book-It reminds me of another Beautiful Mind!

    Thank God someone has the courage to write a hopeful and honest portrayal of someone who is a survivor of a severe mental illness. It is a rare thing indeed to read something at all positive about the mentally ill. Bravo to the courageous and skillful writer of this book and her subject of study, Mr. Nash. Another wonderful new book to read which also gives hope to the mentally ill and the survivors of mental illness is the beautifully written new autobiography by Tracy Harris entitled 'The Music of Madness'. I highly reccomend both books if you want to be inspired and enlightened.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 28, 2002

    A Beautiful Mind: The Life of Mathematical Genius and Nobel Laureate John Nash

    The journey we call life is often filled with tensions and emotions which are a result of those tensions. These things are the spices of life unless they loom so large in relation to our logical mind that they become bitter waters. A trial it is, then, to have tensions so great or emotions so compelling that one is unable to live a 'normal' life. It is interesting to see inside that space to which the logical mind is relegated when all other spaces are filled with the darkness of mental illness. Peering out of the logical into the surrounding unfathomable darkness we readers can almost get a sense of what life with an unrelenting mental illness is like. The inspiration for us all is in the character's finding of the light and the regaining of the control of that dark side of the mind. Another such journey from darkness into light is told by Tracy Harris in her book, 'The Music of Madness'. In Ms. Harris' case the journey is of a brilliant Musician whose life deconstructs because of Mental illness and its tormentors. It is at once chilling, fascinating, frightening, and like Nash she triumphs through sheer strength of will. Both stories are inspirational, and both end up letting the reader feel that he or she just might have hope after all, no matter how high the mountain, or how deep the sea.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2003

    More detailed and less romantic than the movie

    To begin with a cliche, I enjoyed the book more than the movie. Nasar did a great deal of research in compiling this book. Nash is described as a lot more strange and somewhat more boring than he is in the movie, and Nasar's description is probably more accurate. I think Hollywood did a disservice to schizophrenics by depicting the disease as a lot more romantic than it really is. Nasar has an easy writing style, is insightful, and pays great attention to detail. Highly recommended.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2002

    A Wonderful Read

    I bought this book because I became obsessed with the hyp for the movie and the man. I never expected to like the book as much as I did. Could not put it down. Even reading through the mathematical problems was easy. I was so disappointed when I finished it. I will not forget this book for a long time!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2002

    Enlightening

    Excellent movie. Great acting on all cast members. Definitely portrayed John Nash's life very well. Gave much enlightenment on a difficult disease. A positive approach. Helped to understand a disease that a person has to carry inside.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2002

    MOVIE DOES NOT TELL TRUE STORY

    AFTER SEEING THE MOVIE 'A BEAUTIFUL MIND' TWO TIMES, I WAS ANXIOUS TO READ THE BOOK. THE BOOK TELLS THE TRUE STORY OF JOHN NASH JR. WHO IN ACTUALITY I FOUND VERY DIFFICULT TO LIKE. HE IS A CRUEL PERSON IN MANY WAYS, WHICH THE MOVIE DOES NOT PORTRAY. THE INCESSANT MATHEMATICAL DISCUSSIONS, I FOUND DIFFICULT TO UNDERSTAND. IT IS ALSO HARD FOR ME TO FATHOM, THAT JOHN WAS NOT DIAGNOSED AS MENTALLY ILL UNTIL AGE 30.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 28, 2001

    Amazing book

    A must read book, it is an extraordinary story, and it really portray well the life of John Nash that reader sympathizes with Nash, very touching book and also explains the narrow line between a genius and a madman.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 22, 2009

    Amazing Book.

    Amazing life of one of the most prominent genius, the author knows how to mix the scientific approach of a genius, with skills, social life, it is a very honest life of one of the most important minds in Mathematics, paradoxically with personal issues or eccentric moments about this great person and the people that surrounds him. Makes specific historical remarks about Newton, Einstein, but then tell us how human is Dr Nash and how sensible he is with his own environment.

    it is full of interesting details, his theory about games and probability is not as interesting as his personal life, and the way he had to deal with society, I appreciate all the effort to do this book, it took a lot of time to do it as I can see, from the psychological view, scientific and academic it is worth it. I am still learning so much from someone who wanted to share this gift with the world, it talks about religion too and this thin line between "craziness" and "genaility" Havent seen the movie yet but I will.

    Intense of a private life with similarities in the life of other genius, it is very well written, you are not going to believe all this details in just one Person, and how other's started to accept this gifted mind and how this gifted mind accepted his own self, it is wroth it... buy it now.

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  • Posted June 3, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    A Beautiful Biography

    There is warmth and humanity about this book that makes it must reading. John Nash himself, although never dull, is not particularly sympathetic even in the best of times. Nevertheless, as he slips into madness his peers continue to recognize him as the genius who made several important contributions to mathematics. They tolerate his eccentricities and offer him employment despite his debilitating illness. Ultimately, too, his family reconciles with him. Not only is this is an extraordinary journey into the rarified world of higher mathematics but it's a journey into mental illness, its fallout and treatment. PS, the movie, which I loved, pales beside the book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2005

    Great book

    This book leads you inside the guy's mind.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 19, 2003

    A Beautiful Mind-A Complex Life

    What I like most about the abriged version is that it doesn't cut too much out. In fact, it adds something to the movie by explaining to the reader what the movie couldn't touch on. I would suggest to anyone who gets this-to make sure that they have enough time to finish it. (And yes, it is that involved).

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 8, 2003

    Credibility?

    I read this book for a school assignment on credibility, and although it's a great story, according to the criteria the teacher gave, this book is full of opinions, loaded words, and fallacies. However, it's still a great story of triumph.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2003

    A Tour through the Mind of a Genius

    An intellectually stimulating book! A guide through the mind of an absolute genius. A masterpiece of a biography.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 1, 2002

    GREAT

    i think that this is a great book its about the real people who can triumph over a serious disease

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 1, 2002

    A non-fiction about a mathematician for non-mathematicians

    I found this book extremely engaging, but its most important contribution may be introducing mathematical concepts and life as a mathematician to those not trained in mathematics. A Beautiful Mind gives mathematics a human face.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2002

    A cartoon movie vs. the works of the masters

    This is one of the greatest biographys I have ever read. Sylvia Nasar has certainly done her homework. The 100's and 100's of hours she must have dedicated to research. While I tremendously enjoyed the movie, it is like comparing a cartoon to reading the works of a master. My only 2 negatives on the book are : 1) Too much time is dedicated to mini-bios on characters within the book, and 2) if you have not had mathematics beyond Algebra II/Trig, you may very well get lost in a few equations and explanations. All-in-all a great work, a dedicated writer, and thank you Russell, for the great job you did in the movie.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2002

    BORING

    Although I read an extremely wide range of 'intelligent' books, I found this one very boring. (I am in a book club at work and the books that I like are always deemed too hard, too heavy or too intellectual by other members of the club.) The writing style of this book is dense. The main character's obsession with math is dry and boring. And, to be quite frank, the main character is neither a likeable or an engaging individual. I think that because this book was made into a movie, everyone is jumping on the bandwagon and raving about how great the book is. I never saw the movie--maybe I should! I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone. In fact, I didn't even finish reading it.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2002

    A rare accord of a math genious

    A great story about what this man has gone through in life. A true treasure to ftind and read. A wonderful story. I simply had to stay up late to finish this wonderful; book. A great one at that!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 23, 2002

    BEAUTIFULLY HANDLED

    DESPITE THE FACT THAT THIS BOOK IS MERE INK ON PAPER, IT OVERFLOWS WITH COLOR. RICH AND LAYERED, STUNNING AND UNFORGETTABLE. RON HOWARD'S FILM MAKES A TERRIFIC (ALBEIT FAR LESS COMPLEX) COMPANION PIECE.

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