Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
The Invention of Everything Else Paperback – March 2, 2009
|New from||Used from|
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From The New Yorker
Copyright © 2008 Click here to subscribe to The New Yorker --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
It's also about a fictional chambermaid named Louisa, who is inclined towards being insatiably curious about the lives of the guests of the hotel. Louisa becomes obsessed with Tesla, his life and his inventions, and the two are drawn into a platonic friendship after discovering a mutual interest in homing pigeons. Louisa is also a part of another sub-story involving her widowed father, a family friend who claims to have invented a time machine, and a mysterious young man who may have come from the future.
Even though it's a relatively small book, it includes a detailed account of the life of Tesla, his triumphs, his failures, his phobias and inventions, and the many times he snatched defeat from the jaws of success. The writing style is largely conversational, and it doesn't get so bogged down in science that your eyes glaze over, but the overall structure of the story is sometimes hard to follow (and swallow).
The fact and the fiction don't quite fit together in this historical work, but the rich descriptions of the architecture, social structure and ambience of early twentieth century New York make for interesting reading.
Recommended for inventors, science buffs and historians
Amanda Richards, April 10, 2008
This is a novel of great characters and even better atmosphere. Besides Tesla, who comes to life as a suitably mysterious elderly man pushing forward and looking back even as the end nears, there is Louisa, a curious chambermaid at the New Yorker hotel who works her way into Tesla's life. The tendrils of the past, people lost, hold on to both of these characters tightly and we see some of that through various dips into history in addition to getting the sense of where both their lives are now. This introduces us to a host of fascinating secondary characters that hover over our main characters like ghosts.
But I think it is the atmosphere of the novel that will stay with me forever. New York of the 1940's and the New Yorker hotel in particular, provide a setting for this novel that, though solid, seems to be shrouded in mist. This creates a world of reality constantly infiltrated by visions and dreams--of the past, of time machines, of bringing the dead to life--that are periodically pushed away by the ugly face of reality. It is very cleverly done.
Overall, I was tremendously impressed by this novel. Taking risks and occasionally coming close to hitting a sour note, it never did. This is one of the best novels I've read recently.
Magical realism blends with scientific query and knowledge. It is 1943 at the New Yorker hotel, where Tesla lives in isolation and penury with his pigeons and his journal and his thoughts. He is fascinated by the mystery of homing pigeons, the fact that they consistently find their way home. He meets Louisa, an educated young chambermaid there, who shares his fascination with pigeons and has a coop she keeps at her home. They develop a fragile, compassionate, and intellectual relationship.
As the story unfolds, mysteries open to even larger mysteries, and time as a theme seems to have a current as charged as electricity. Louisa has an admirer, Arthur, who may be from the future. Her father, a melancholy and also isolated man still grieving for his dead wife, desires to enter a time machine (built by a friend of his) and reunite with his dead wife.
Hunt's writing is sensuous and full of inner dialogue, blending aspects of psychology, philosophy, science, and science fiction.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
How could a book about Tesla be boring? This book was not just boring, but it had no goal, no purpose, no idea, and it was a waste of my time. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Pamela J. Sharp
It was five stars all the way, until the very last chapter or so. I LOVED the story up til then. Obviously I was fairly certain that Tesla would die toward the end given the book... Read morePublished 22 months ago by Amy Kranick
Thank you, Ms. Hunt, for so greatly preserving the memory of one of the greatest man in history. "A vanilla American public" is an amazing in-a-nut-shell description I wish I had... Read morePublished 24 months ago by FJNanic
I first learned about Tesla last July, at the age of 62. Why were we not taught about this important inventor in grade school? Read morePublished on April 28, 2014 by Bookaholic
nineteen more words not required, all i need is my personal opinion of this product still need more words. this form is why more products are not reviewed