Buy Used
$3.99
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: Eligible for Amazon's FREE Super Saver/Prime Shipping, 24/7 Customer Service, and package tracking. 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.
Add to Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Einstein's Daughter: The Search for Lieserl Mass Market Paperback – November 1, 2000


See all 7 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Mass Market Paperback
"Please retry"
$14.77 $0.01

Customers Who Viewed This Item Also Viewed

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 347 pages
  • Publisher: Riverhead Trade (November 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1573228362
  • ISBN-13: 978-1573228367
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.5 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,290,556 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Albert Einstein met Mileva Mari at Zurich's Polytechnikum, where they were both physics students. Shortly thereafter, in 1902, she secretly gave birth to their daughter, Lieserl, at her parents' home in a small Serbian village. Although the couple married a year later (and divorced in 1919), they never publicly acknowledged their first child--and, in all probability, the girl never left the country of her birth. In order to uncover Lieserl's fate, author Michele Zackheim knew she had to gain access to the fiercely proud and private Serbian kin who sheltered Mileva after the baby's birth until she rejoined Albert in Switzerland in 1903, and presumably never saw her daughter again. Zackheim's narrative, studded with Serbian proverbs and accounts of elaborately polite fencing with elderly relatives who might just know something, offers a vivid glimpse of a rural life that has changed little in the nearly 100 years since Mileva's time. It's also a cat-and-mouse tale of missing documents, letters with sentences obliterated or pages destroyed, and four women who might have been Lieserl... but weren't. The author's final conclusion about Lieserl's fate is speculative, to put it mildly, and most Einstein scholars have questioned it. Einstein's Daughter is best enjoyed as a memoir of scholarly detection and a colorful social history rather than a conventional biography. --Wendy Smith --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

In 1986, Albert Einstein's granddaughter discovered a cache of love letters by the physicist and Mileva Maric, the Serbian woman who became his first wife. The letters disclosed that the couple had a daughter named Lieserl, born in 1902, a year before they married, but all traces of this infant daughterAhitherto unknown to biographersAdisappear after 1903. What became of Lieserl? Scholars have assumed that she was put up for adoption, but Zackheim, who went to Serbia and Germany to comb archives and to interview the Einsteins' surviving relatives, neighbors and associates, believes that Lieserl was born with a severe mental handicap and died of scarlet fever in infancy. Her thesis is intriguing but inconclusive, based on only a few witnesses' recollections. Writing elegantly, Zackheim does establish that Lieserl lived with Mileva's parents, and her remarkable sleuthing turns up new details of Einstein's personal life. In her withering, one-sided portrait, the great physicist, pacifist, freethinker and internationalist was a dictatorial, insulting, selfish, unfaithful spouse, a curmudgeon with a misanthropic streak. Einstein, by this account, emotionally abused his ailing first wife and virtually abandoned their two young sons after he divorced Mileva in 1919 so that he could marry his cousin Elsa five months later. Zackheim paints Einstein's second marriage as one of mere convenience, portraying him as a cold, distant mate, "a middle-aged Lothario" who "tended to have a few romances going at once." She also speculates, without evidence, that Einstein may have infected Mileva with syphilis, and that she could have passed it to Lieserl in utero, increasing the risk of mental retardation. (Nov.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Authors

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars
5 star
3
4 star
2
3 star
1
2 star
4
1 star
0
See all 10 customer reviews
In addition, the letters indicate that Mileva may have played a significant role in his work of 1902-1906.
Reader
Suspense grows as one wonders how she will come to any conclusion as she sifts through tangled history and her own often conflicting exploration.
Gilah Yelin Hirsch
This book is easy to read, in general, although the abundant number of people interviewed makes it a bit confusing at times.
Manola Sommerfeld

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Manola Sommerfeld on August 8, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Albert and Mileva Einstein had premarital sex and as a result, Mileva got pregnant. She had a girl, born in 1902. This was considered a big disgrace in those days in her country, and little is known about the child and her fate. The author sets to find out what happened to Lieserl. This book is easy to read, in general, although the abundant number of people interviewed makes it a bit confusing at times. Fortunately, the author did not forget to include a genealogical tree in the first few pages, to which i referred constantly.
Just a few points:
· The author stretches facts quite a bit. For example, on page 175, Einstein is supposed to have written to his ex-wife: "But the heredity of our own children is not without blemish", and the author affirms that Einstein "was ostensibly including Lieserl". Really? People speak like this all the time and are not necessarily referring to a love child. The front cover photo is another example. Zackheim says, "This may be the only existing image of Lieserl", and the blur she is referring to can also pass as a goat, a fence post or a dahlia. There are many other examples of these might-or-might-not situations, and the problem is that the author draws too many conclusions from them.
· While i was reading this book I could not help but think that her research did not differ all that much from what journalists do when writing an exposé on a modern day celebrity. They usually do not have to travel to Central Europe to do so, and do not get financial support from the NEA, but in substance they do the same job. Zackheim speculates whether Einstein and Mileva had sex after their divorce, whether Einstein's syphilis is what caused his children's ailments and all this speculation becomes slightly sordid after a while.
Read more ›
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Reader on September 9, 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
The author put five years of her life into writing this book, and it shows. This is a thoroughly researched book about a little-known event that happened 100 years ago. The conclusion is, of course, speculative but entirely convincing. What is even more revealing is what she tells us about the character of Einstein. For this information she draws on her extensive bibliography. She didn't make any of it up. The quotations are from letters that Einstein wrote. He was a philandering cad who cared for nobody around him. I would not have liked to be related to him in any way. In addition, the letters indicate that Mileva may have played a significant role in his work of 1902-1906. So much for the myth of Einstein, genius, humanitarian, etc.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 16, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book was a fascinating read .... Other problems: The book bogged down in names and is hindered by a lack of an index. So when my head was swimming with names, I couldn't check the book's first mention of that person to be reminded who it was. Zackheim was repeatedly careless with pronouns, so a "she" or "her" in a sentence could refer to more than one woman.
Zackheim speculated too much, such as who knew whom, and what motivated people. She speculated on small things, such as whether Einstein and his ex-wife resumed sexual relations. She speculated on big things - such as what happened to Lieserl.
I was originally engrossed in the book. I dreamed about it one night, and the next day, I had to read the last 100 pages to find out what happened to Lieserl. Zackheim doesn't know. I felt let down.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
By Mr. A. Baron on August 23, 2014
Format: Hardcover
This book has had some hostile reviews but it is one for which I have a soft spot, and not just because my name appears in the credits on page 295. Michele Zackheim put an enormous amount of effort into writing it, the fact that she was unable to confirm her thesis is neither here nor there, this is a book about the search for Lieserl, not about finding her. By the same token, countless books have been written about Jack The Ripper, and many authors claim to have unearthed conclusive evidence that the Ripper was a certain individual. That does not mean none of these books are worth reading, if for unrelated reasons.

"Einstein's Daughter" contains a great deal of information about Einstein himself and much else, including the author's personal journey. Her honest account should not be denigrated just because she failed to solve a mystery that with the passage of time has probably become insoluble.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
6 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Karen Hoy on April 21, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Zackheim's style is certainly readable, but her conclusions leave something to be desired. She provides the reader with too much irrelevant or misleading detail and too many of her own strong opinions. I also found her explanation of Lieserl's ultimate fate to be unconvincing. To her credit, she has told a story that should be known, and provided a number of wonderful photos. In my opinion, two of the photos depict an extremely plausible candidate for an adult Lieserl.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Customer Images


What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?