• The Invention of Nature

  • The Adventures of Alexander von Humboldt, the Lost Hero of Science
  • By: Andrea Wulf
  • Narrated by: David Drummond
  • Length: 14 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Release date: 11-18-15
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: John Murray
  • 4.7 (11 ratings)

Regular price: $26.64

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Publisher's Summary

Winner of the Costa Biography Award 2015. Winner of the LA Times Book Prize 2015 (Science and Technology). Shortlisted for the Independent Book Week Award 2016.
Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859) is the great lost scientist: more things are named after him than anyone else. There are towns, rivers, mountain ranges, the ocean current that runs along the South American coast; there's a penguin, a giant squid - even the Mare Humboldtianum on the moon.
His colourful adventures read like something out of a Boy's Own story: Humboldt explored deep into the rainforest, climbed the world's highest volcanoes and inspired princes and presidents, scientists and poets alike. Napoleon was jealous of him; Simon Bolívar's revolution was fuelled by his ideas; Darwin set sail on the Beagle because of Humboldt; and Jules Verne's Captain Nemo owned all his many books. He simply was, as one contemporary put it, 'the greatest man since the Deluge'.
©2015 Andrea Wulf. Recorded by arrangement with Doubleday, an imprint of the Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House LLC (P)2015 Highbridge, a division of Recorded Books
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Critic Reviews

"Dazzling." (Literary Review)
"Brilliant." (Sunday Express)
"Extraordinary and gripping." (New Scientist)
"A superb biography." (The Economist)
"An exhilarating armchair voyage." (Giles Milton, Mail on Sunday)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Michael Hall on 11-30-16

An engaging, interesting read on a fascinating man

A very enjoyable read about a fastinating man who's life was well lived and who has had far reaching influence during his lifetime and to present day. A vital part of anyone's reading collection who is interested in science writing and the environment. Michael Hall -Environmental photographer

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Andy on 01-05-17

Wonderful book

This is an incredible book and beautifully written. However the narration by someone who sounds like they should be doing movie trailers was really jarring. Check the sample to see if you can handle it.

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful

By Antonio Konitsiotis on 10-17-16

interesting story but was hoping for more

An interesting story about one of the most influential people on the environmental movement and understanding nature.
I was perhaps expecting more as it won the Royal Society book prize, but I felt the book neither fulfilled in creating a compelling personal story of Humboldts story or of his seminal thoughts in reconstructing a whole scientific field. Arguably the best written bits are the influence on other scientists and authors. Worth it for those who have never heard of Humboldt.
Narration was clear, but too monotone for me.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Julia on 11-11-16

worth sticking with so many revelations

struggled to finish quickly despite being well written. Definitely worth sticking with even if you have to chip away at it. Would have been nice with a different narrator, but was sufficient.

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By Robert Watkinson on 05-25-16

Forgotten Contribution Still Relevant.

Timely read with Mankinds' reach into Space Living imminent. How can imagination save Nature from Economic Development?

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