Book Review: Benjamin Franklin by Walter Isaacson

January 17, 2013

Benjamin Franklin: An American Lifeby Walter Isaacson is bar-none the best biography I have ever read. The book tells the amazing life of one of America’s Founding Fathers and well known scientists.

  • 608 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 074325807X

Book Review: Benjamin Franklin by Walter Isaacson

My rating for Benjamin Franklin: An American Life5

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In Benjamin Franklin: An American Life, author Walter Isaacson takes us on a journey with Benjamin Franklin from the cradle to the grave, through decades and generations of scientifically and personal achievements, setbacks and misfortunes.

The book itself is easy to read, told through chronological glimpses at Benjamin Franklin’s life rather than working towards an overall swiping grand achievement, a mistake, I believe, which is done by many biographers.
Think of you own life?
Do you want think that there is only one story of grand achievement to tell or many little stories which might give the reader a new perspective and an opportunity to know more about you than just a footnote in history.

We all know Benjamin Franklin from history classes and the teacher might have mentioned his other notable achievements, however Mr. Franklin had many notable achievements – far too many to mention in a 45 minute classroom. This biography is a terrific sweeping read and full of insights.

One of the best points about this book is that Benjamin Franklin, even though a loyal subject to the crown for most of his life, is a contemporary American – or certainly what we think of ourselves as and what we like to achieve: hard working, inventive, brave, curious, a PR maven and rich.

A recommended read and a wonderful gift.

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More Books by Walter Isaacson

Zohar — Man of la Book
Dis­claimer:I got bought this book.
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  • VioletteJanuary 18, 2013 at 8:10 am

    Great review! I don’t read many biographies anymore so it was interesting to me that biography authors tend to write toward one big life achievement. Do you think that if Franklin had one great achievement it would be the development of a character trait? Just wondering.

    • Zohar - Man of la BookJanuary 19, 2013 at 8:57 am

      I don’t think his achievements developed Franklin’s character traits, but that his character traits developed his achievements.

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